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Based on three years of ethnographic research with fans, and informed by the author's own experiences, this is an interdisciplinary study of the ways in which ordinary people form sustained attachments to Bruce Springsteen and his music, rooted in an exploration of the nature of fandom.
A provocative, multifaceted look at a rock icon.
This is an exploration of the outburst of cultural exuberance that swept African America during the late 1930s. Tracing the path of one symbolic gesture - the jump - across cultural and disciplinary boundaries, this book provides a unique, political, intellectual and artistic analysis of the years preseding World War II.
Winner of the Northeast Popular Culture Association’s Peter C. Rollins Book Award (2012) Winner of the ASCAP Deems Taylor Award (2012) Listening and Longing explores the emergence of music listening in the United States, from its early stages in the antebellum era, when entrepreneurs first packaged and sold the experience of hearing musical performance, to the Gilded Age, when genteel critics began to successfully redefine the cultural value of listening to music. In a series of interconnected stories, American studies scholar Daniel Cavicchi focuses on the impact of industrialization, urbanization, and commercialization in shaping practices of music audiences in America. Grounding our contemporary culture of listening in its seminal historical moment—before the iPod, stereo system, or phonograph—Cavicchi offers a fresh understanding of the role of listening in the history of music.
Fans used to be seen as an overly obsessed fraction of the audience. In the last few decades, shifts in media technology and production have instead made fandom a central mode of consumption. A range of ideas has emerged to explore different facets of this growing phenomenon. With a foreword by Matt Hills, Understanding Fandom introduces the whole field of fan research by looking at the history of debate, key paradigms and methodological issues. The book discusses insights from scholars working with fans of different texts, genres and media forms, including television and popular music. Mark Duffett shows that fan research is an emergent interdisciplinary field with its own key thinkers: a tradition that is distinct from both textual analysis and reception studies. Drawing on a range of debates from media studies, cultural studies and psychology, Duffett argues that fandom is a particular kind of engagement with the power relations of media culture.
Bruce Springsteens music and performances have provided an emotional outlet for thousands of fans all over the world. Drawing from participant observation, the statements of Springsteen fans, and the life and music of Springsteen, Randalls ethnographic treatment documents the ways in which fans are inspired to create a global cultural community. This community functions as a social network, offering emotional support, spirituality, and the motivation for doing good works. Randall discovers that the sensitivities and values Springsteen instills in his fans are as alive and valid as those experienced by adherents of widely recognized spiritual traditions. Her in-depth examination of the thoughts and actions of these fans reveals that embracing nontraditional spiritual values can engender multifaceted feelings, including trust, hope, and respect for humankind. By acknowledging that a personal spiritual connection can develop outside a sectarian landscape, an appreciation of and tolerance for different belief systems can be cultivated and nourished.
The Pulitzer Prize-winning author of Children of Crisis offers a unique vision of musical legend Bruce Springsteen and the influence of his music on both the lives of ordinary Americans and on the American literary tradition, examining the meaning of Springsteen's lyrics and profiling "The Boss" as a poet within a larger social, cultural, and philosophical context. Reprint. 26,000 first printing.
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