Claims To Fame

Author: Joshua Gamson
Publisher: Univ of California Press
ISBN: 9780520914155
Size: 65.41 MB
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Moving from People magazine to publicists' offices to tours of stars' homes, Joshua Gamson investigates the larger-than-life terrain of American celebrity culture. In the first major academic work since the early 1940s to seriously analyze the meaning of fame in American life, Gamson begins with the often-heard criticisms that today's heroes have been replaced by pseudoheroes, that notoriety has become detached from merit. He draws on literary and sociological theory, as well as interviews with celebrity-industry workers, to untangle the paradoxical nature of an American popular culture that is both obsessively invested in glamour and fantasy yet also aware of celebrity's transparency and commercialism. Gamson examines the contemporary "dream machine" that publicists, tabloid newspapers, journalists, and TV interviewers use to create semi-fictional icons. He finds that celebrity watchers, for whom spotting celebrities becomes a spectator sport akin to watching football or fireworks, glean their own rewards in a game that turns as often on playing with inauthenticity as on identifying with stars. Gamson also looks at the "celebritization" of politics and the complex questions it poses regarding image and reality. He makes clear that to understand American public culture, we must understand that strange, ubiquitous phenomenon, celebrity.

Fame Junkies

Author: Jake Halpern
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
ISBN: 061891871X
Size: 58.43 MB
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An analytical study of America's rabid fascination with the lives of celebrities draws on numerous personal interviews--with fans, Hollywood insiders, and would-be celebrities--to examine the psychological, sociological, and biological roots of the obsession, as well as its implications for modern life. By the author of Braving Home. Reprint.

Hollywood Stardom

Author: Paul McDonald
Publisher: John Wiley & Sons
ISBN: 1118321669
Size: 30.74 MB
Format: PDF, ePub
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By integrating star studies and film industry studies, Hollywood Stardom reveals the inextricable bonds between culture and commerce in contemporary notions of film stardom. Integrates the traditions of star studies and industry studies to establish an original and innovative mode of analysis whereby the ‘star image’ is replaced with the ‘star brand’ Offers the first extensive analysis of stardom in the ‘post-studio’ era Combines genre, narrative, acting, and discourse analysis with aspects of marketing theory and the economic analysis of the film market Draws on an extensive body of research data not previously deployed in film scholarship A wide range of star examples are explored including George Clooney, Mel Gibson, Tom Cruise, Daniel Day-Lewis, Tom Hanks, Will Smith, and Julia Roberts

Modern Families

Author: Joshua Gamson
Publisher: NYU Press
ISBN: 147984246X
Size: 37.42 MB
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The kinds of families we see today are different than they were even a decade ago as paths to parenthood have been rejiggered by technology, activism, and law. Gamson brings us extraordinary family creation tales that illuminate this changing world of contemporary kinship. He tells a variety of unconventional family-creation tales-- adoption and assisted reproduction, gay and straight parents, coupled and single, and multi-parent families-- set against the social, legal, and economic contexts in which they were made.

Celebrity And Power

Author: P. David Marshall
Publisher: U of Minnesota Press
ISBN: 9780816627257
Size: 13.33 MB
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The celebrity is an ambiguous figure in contemporary culture. Simultaneously celebrated and denigrated, stars represent not only the embodiment of success, but also the ultimate construction of false value. They are a peculiar form of public subjectivity that negotiates the tension between a democratic culture of access and a consumer capitalist culture of excess. Celebrity and Power examines this dynamic, questioning the cultural forces behind our need to become endlessly embroiled with the construction and collapse of celebrities.Through detailed analysis of figures from Tom Cruise to Oprah Winfrey to the commercial pop music sensation New Kids on the Block, author and cultural critic P. David Marshall investigates the general public’s desire to associate with celebrity. He examines various kinds of stars, questioning the needs each type fulfills in our lives and relating these needs to particular entertainment media. Marshall asks why enigmatic, distant stars populate the silver screen while television constructs approachable “everyman” figures and popular music features audience-identified celebrity personalities. He looks at the significance of stars who amass cultlike followings as well as those who appear to prompt outright rejection.Celebrity and Power identifies the forces that have enveloped the development of democratic culture and their partial resolution through a redefined public sphere populated by celebrities. Marshall argues that the new concern with the masses that characterizes modern capitalism promotes figures who can be seen as part of the crowd but who are articulated as individuals. As such, they provide a model of self-differentiation that furthers an economy in which product consumption is thought to bestow individualism and personality.Bridging the fields of media studies, film studies, communications, and popular culture, Marshall’s volume is a unique resource for students and researchers in all of these disciplines as well as for the general reader.P. David Marshall is director of the Media and Cultural Studies Centre in the Department of English, University of Queensland in Australia.

The Fabulous Sylvester

Author: Joshua Gamson
Publisher: Henry Holt and Company
ISBN: 1466850167
Size: 56.80 MB
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A journey back through the music, madness, and unparalleled freedom of an era of change-the '70s-as told through the life of ultra-fabulous superstar Sylvester Imagine a pied piper singing in a dazzling falsetto, wearing glittering sequins, and leading the young people of the nation to San Francisco and on to liberation where nothing was straight-laced or old-fashioned. And everyone, finally, was welcome-to come as themselves. This is not a fairy tale. This was real, mighty real, and disco sensation Sylvester was the piper. Joshua Gamson-a Yale-trained pop culture expert-uses him, a boy who would be fabulous, to lead us through the story of the '70s when a new era of change liberated us from conformity and boredom. Gamson captures the exuberant life, feeling, energy, and fun of a generation's wonderful, magical waking up-from the parties to the dancing and music. The story begins with a little black boy who started with nothing but a really big voice. We follow him from the Gospel chorus to the glory days in the Castro where a generation shook off its shame as Sylvester sang and began his rise as part of a now-notorious theatrical troup called the Cockettes. Celebrity, sociology, and music history mingle and merge around this endlessly entertaining story of a singer who embodied the freedom, spirit, and flamboyance of a golden moment in American culture.

First Comes Love

Author: Shelley Cobb
Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing USA
ISBN: 162892120X
Size: 21.88 MB
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With the prominence of one-name couples (Brangelina, Kimye) and famous families (the Smiths, the Beckhams), it is becoming increasingly clear that celebrity is no longer an individual pursuit-if it ever was. Accordingly, First Comes Love explores celebrity kinship and the phenomenon of the power couple: those relationships where two stars come together and where their individual identities as celebrities become inseparable from their status as a famous twosome. Taken together, the chapters in this volume interrogate the ways these alliances are bound up in wider cultural debates about marriage, love, intimacy, family, parenthood, sexuality, and gender, in their particular historical contexts, from the 1920s to the present day. Interdisciplinary in scope, First Comes Love seeks to establish how celebrity relationships play particular roles in dramatizing, disrupting, and reconciling often-contradictory ideas about coupledom and kinship formations.

Stargazing

Author: Kerry O. Ferris
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1136828672
Size: 36.45 MB
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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The sociology of fame and celebrity is at the cutting edge of current scholarship in a number of different areas of study. Stargazing highlights the interactional dynamics of celebrity and fame in contemporary society, including the thoughts and feelings of stars on the red carpet, the thrills and risks of encountering a famous person at a convention or on the streets, and the excitement generated even by the obvious fakery of celebrity impersonators. Using compelling, real-life examples involving popular celebrities, Ferris and Harris examine how the experience and meanings of celebrity are shaped by social norms, interactional negotiations, and interpretive storytelling.

Reading Celebrity Gossip Magazines

Author: Andrea McDonnell
Publisher: John Wiley & Sons
ISBN: 0745684556
Size: 40.83 MB
Format: PDF, Mobi
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Americans are obsessed with celebrities. While our fascination with fame intensified throughout the twentieth century, the rise of the weekly gossip magazine in the early 2000s confirmed and fueled our popular culture’s celebrity mania. After a decade of diets and dates, breakups and baby bumps, celebrity gossip magazines continue to sell millions of issues each week. Why are readers, especially young women, so attracted to these magazines? What pleasures do they offer us? And why do we read them, even when we disagree with the images of femininity that they splash across their hot-pink covers? Andrea McDonnell answers these questions with the help of interviews from editors and readers, and her own textual and visual analysis. McDonnell’s perspective is multifaceted; she examines the notorious narratives of celebrity gossip magazines as well as the genre’s core features, such as the "Just Like Us" photo montage and the "Who Wore It Best?" poll. McDonnell shows that, despite their trivial reputation, celebrity gossip magazines serve as an important site of engagement for their readers, who use these texts to generate conversation, manage relationships, and consider their own ideas and values.