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Download Acting Jewish: Negotiating Ethnicity on the American Stage by Henry Bial PDF

By Henry Bial

The background of the yank leisure and the heritage of the Jewish humans within the usa are inextricably intertwined. Jews have supplied Broadway and Hollywood with a few of their such a lot enduring expertise, from writers like Arthur Miller, Wendy Wasserstein, and Tony Kushner; to administrators like Jerome Robbins and Woody Allen; to performers like Gertrude Berg, John Garfield, Lenny Bruce, and Barbra Streisand. Conversely, express company has supplied Jews with a way of upward mobility, a version for a way to "become American," and a resource of cultural pride.Acting Jewish records this background, taking a look at the paintings of Jewish writers, administrators, and actors within the American leisure with specific consciousness to the ways that those artists provide behavioral types for Jewish-American audiences. The publication spans the interval from 1947 to the current and takes an in depth examine a few of America's favourite performs (Death of a salesperson, Fiddler at the Roof, Angels in America), movies (Gentleman's contract, Annie Hall), and tv exhibits (The Goldbergs, Seinfeld), deciding on a double-coding in which performers enact, and spectators learn, Jewishness in modern performance-and, through extension, enact and browse different minority identities. The publication therefore explores and illuminates the ever-changing courting among Jews and mainstream American culture."Fascinating and unique . . . Bial's command of resources is extraordinary, and his notion of 'double-coding' is convincing . . . the ebook shouldn't have any hassle discovering a wide audience."-Barbara Grossman, writer of humorous girl: The existence and instances of Fanny BriceHenry Bial is Assistant Professor of Theatre and picture, collage of Kansas. he's editor of the functionality experiences Reader and co-editor of the Brecht Sourcebook.

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Extra info for Acting Jewish: Negotiating Ethnicity on the American Stage and Screen

Example text

93 Additionally, all the perfor­ mances discussed in this book have two characteristics in common: (I) the performance generated, immediately or eventually, a critical dis­ course among writers and critics for whom Jewishness is a major con­ cern; and ( 2 ) the performance achieved significant commercial and crit­ ical success. " I am not the first critic to recognize, rightly or wrongly, double-coded indicators of Jewishness in Death ofa Salesman or Zelig. Nor is this book an exer­ cise in the "recovery" of a lost or hidden Jewishness that lies undiscov­ ered in the source material.

I'll-I'll be Jewish! I'll-well, I-all I gotta do is say it. I can live it myself for six weeks, eight weeks, nine months, no matter how long it takes. " To accom­ plish this, he simply tells everyone he meets that he is Jewish; the way people's reactions to him change on learning that he is Jewish becomes the basis for his story-"! Was Jewish For Eight Weeks "-and ulti­ mately for the film. Asked by his young son Tommy (played by Dean Stockwell) to define Jewish, Green explains it as a religious choice.

While overseas, he meets a gentile girl, falls in love, and brings her home to New York to marry her and live happily ever after. " Inspired by the life of AlJolson (born AyeshaJoelson to OrthodoxJew­ ish parents), The Jazz Singer tells the story of a cantor's son, Jakie Rabi­ nowitz, who runs away from his Lower East Side home and becomes a professional singer, changing his name to Jack Robin. When Jack returns to New York for his Broadway debut, his father refuses to acknowledge the validity of his career choice.

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