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Incongruous Entertainment


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A look at the camp cult appeal of MGM musicals of the 1940s and 50s to gay men today, along with an historical analysis of the films' production histories

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments vii
Introduction 1
1. Improbable Stuff: Camp and the MGM House Style 41
2. The Lady is a Camp: Glamour, Star Turns, and the Boys in the Chorus 88
3. Dancing with Balls: Sissies, Sailors, and the Camp Masculinity of Gene Kelly 149
4. What a Glorious Classic: Singin' in the Rain and Mass-Camp Recycling 200
5. Hollywood's Most Precious Jewels: The MGM Musical's Return As a Camp Commodity 246
6. Judy on the Net: Garland, Camp, and Contemporary Fandom 287
Conclusion 337
Notes 343
Works Cited 353
Index 361

About the Author

Steven Cohan is Professor of English at Syracuse University. He is the author of Masked Men: Masculinity and the Movies in the Fifties; the editor of Hollywood Musicals: The Film Reader; and a coeditor of The Road Movie Book and Screening the Male: Exploring Masculinities in Hollywood Cinema.


"Steven Cohan's Incongruous Entertainment brings together two fascinating subjects--camp and the musical--that are often casually linked but have never been explored as carefully and usefully as they are here."--Pamela Robertson Wojcik, author of Guilty Pleasures: Feminist Camp from Mae West to Madonna "Steven Cohan's scholarship is impeccable and his writing elegant and witty. He pulls together all the previous approaches to camp and uses them to explore the mgm musical and its stars from every angle I could think of--and a few I would never have thought of."--Alexander Doty, author of Flaming Classics: Queering the Film Canon "Cohan meticulously supports his argument with detailed examples while eloquently and often humorously bringing the musicals and their stars to life. Both fans and novices are invited to rethink the political import of the MGM musicals from the studio era through the present... Because of Cohan's revisionist scholarship, this book is also an essential read for anyone who studies camp and musicals."--Leah Perry, Journal of Popular Culture "[I]nformative...[and] interesting...Greater than the sum of its parts, E.T. Culture is a liminal exploration of UFOs and related phenomena as expressions of western culture's project to exterminate boundaries between self and other, real and fantastic, everyday and uncanny, earthly and unearthly, human and posthuman." --Doland Palumbo, The Journal of American Culture

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