Going Out

Going Out : The Rise and Fall of Public Amusements

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This is a social history of 20th-century show business and the new American public that assembled in the city's pleasure places, parks, theatres, nickledeons, world's fair midways and dance halls. The new amusement centres welcomed women, men, children, native-born and immigrant, rich, poor and middling. Only African Americans were excluded or segregated in the audience, though they were overrepresented in parodic form on stage. This stigmatization of the African American, David Nasaw argues, was the glue that cemented an otherwise disparate audience, muting social distinctions among "whites" and creating a common national culture.

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  • Paperback | 320 pages
  • 154.94 x 228.6 x 22.86mm | 521.63g
  • Cambridge, MassUnited States
  • English
  • 32 halftones, 2 line illustrations
  • 0674356225
  • 9780674356221

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Review quote

David Nasaw's fine history of public amusements in urban America is such a welcome contribution to contemporary cultural debate...Nasaw unearths fascinating details about everything from the early history of the movies to pre-World War I dance crazes; and he raises fundamental questions about the web of connections joining commercial play, public space and cultural cohesion. -- Jackson Lears New York Times Book Review An effervescent social history. The New Yorker No other book brings together so much material about so many different urban entertainment forms--and connects their history with a few simple and powerful overarching themes. -- Warren Goldstein The Nation

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About David Nasaw

David Nasaw is Professor of History and American Studies at the Graduate Center of the City University of New York.

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Reviews from Goodreads.com