The Queens of Burlesque

Vintage Photographs of the 1940s and 1950s

The Queens of Burlesque

For the first time, stunning images of the women of the burlesque stage are gathered together in one great volume. In period photographs the timeless beauty of those exotic women who titillated, teased, and sometimes tortured their audiences is captured and celebrated. These memorable images make it clear that, when it comes to a beautiful body and a gorgeous face, tastes change very little. And just as in the past, the imagination is encouraged to run wild and ponder what might have been. This is a book to relax with and enjoy over and over again. Its rich, nostalgic view of a bygone era in American entertainment will please everyone, men and women alike. A "revealing" piece of Americana!

Body and Soul

Jazz and Blues in American Film, 1927-63

Body and Soul

How the "dark continent" of blues and jazz provided Hollywood with a resonant resource to construct and negotiate the boundaries of American cultural identity Writing in the late 1930s, New York journalist Joseph Mitchell observed: "Except for the minstrel show, the strip act is probably America's only original contribution to the theater." In Body and Soul, Peter Stanfield's arguments echo Mitchell's observation. Stanfield begins by exploring how Hollywood used blackface minstrelsy to represent an emerging urban American theatrical history, and ends with a look at how American film at the close of the studio era represented urban decay through the figure of the burlesque dancer and stripper. In between, Stanfield considers the representation of American urban life in jazz, blues, ballads, and sin-songs and the manner in which the film studios exploited this "gutter" music. Alongside extensive, thought-provoking, and lively analysis of some of the most popular jazz and blues songs of the twentieth century--"Frankie and Johnny," "St. Louis Blues," "The Man I Love," "Blues in the Night," and "Body and Soul"--the book contains new work on blackface minstrelsy in early sound movies, racial representation and censorship, torch singers and torch songs, burlesque and strippers, the noir cityscape, the Hollywood Left, and hot jazz. Peter Stanfield is Senior Lecturer in film studies at the University of Kent. He is the author of The Lost Trail: Hollywood and 1930s Westerns, and Horse Opera: The Strange History of the 1930s Singing Cowboy.

The Costumes of Burlesque

1866-2018

The Costumes of Burlesque

The Costumes of Burlesque: 1866-2018 is the first volume to inclusively document burlesque costume from its birth in the 1860’s through the global burlesque movement in 2018. This lushly illustrated book presents the history and development of this American art form by documenting the origins, influencers, and genuine articles that created its aesthetic. Showcases of legendary performers, including Lydia Thompson, Gypsy Rose Lee, Sally Rand, Bettie Page, Kitten Natividad, and Dita Von Teese, demonstrate costume styles through the years. This guide gives readers a clear view of how burlesque costume looked and why. It teaches collectors, burlesque performers, and fans alike to recognize vintage pieces for what they are and to design their own costumes with inspiration from the originals. By including detailed costume documentation, over 400 images, and interviews with prominent costume designers such as Catherine D’Lish and Garo Sparo, The Costumes of Burlesque brings 150 years of burlesque costume history to life.

Burlesque West

Showgirls, Sex, and Sin in Postwar Vancouver

Burlesque West

After the Second World War, Vancouver emerged as a hotbed of striptease talent. In Burlesque West,the first critical history of this notorious striptease scene, Becki Ross delves into the erotic entertainment industry at the northern end of the dancers' west coast tour - the North-South route from Los Angeles to Vancouver that provided rotating work for dancers and variety for club clientele. Drawing on extensive archival materials and fifty first-person accounts of former dancers, strip-club owners, booking agents, choreographers, and musicians, Ross reveals stories that are deeply flavoured with an era before "striptease fell from grace because the world stopped dreaming," in the words of ex-dancer Lindalee Tracey. Though jobs in this particular industry are often perceived as having little in common with other sorts of work, retired dancers' accounts resonate surprisingly with those of contemporary service workers, including perceptions of unionization and workplace benefits and hazards. Ross also traces the sanitization and subsequent integration of striptease style and neo-burlesque trends into mass culture, examining continuity and change to ultimately demonstrate that Vancouver's glitzy nightclub scene, often condemned as a quasi-legal strain of urban blight, in fact greased the economic engine of the post-war city. Provocative and challenging, Burlesque West combines the economic, the social, the sexual, and the personal, and is sure to intellectually tantalize.

Burlesque and the New Bump-n-grind

Burlesque and the New Bump-n-grind

Though burlesque has survived in the back of our cultural consciousness after being pushed aside by modern stripping in the '50s, the revival that began in the early '90s has finally brought burlesque back to the forefront of popular culture. Evolving from an underground movement to a nearly mainstream fetish, neo-burlesque embraces a wide variety of modern interpretations all based on the classic bump and grind and “taking it off” with a wink and a smile. From classic tributes to punk rock revisionists, women of all ages, sizes, and backgrounds are rediscovering burlesque and reinventing it. A sense of heightened imagination, empowerment and energy are being delivered to the stage, perhaps even more so than during the historic heyday, the Golden Age of Burlesque. Slipping behind the scene, Burlesque and the New Bump-n-Grind undresses the issues of feminism, modern popularity, and what exactly draws the unique and varied audience members to the shows. The women—and men!—of burlesque also receive their fleshed-out dues by a categorized peek into the various troupe styles including classical, re-creationists, revivalists, modern, circus, performance art, political, queer, bawdy singers and comics. Peppered throughout the book are full-color and black-and-white photographs that fully instill the picturesque dance into the reader's mind. Founder of one of the first neo-burlesque troupes, author Michelle Baldwin (a.k.a, Vivienne Va-Voom) has helped to bring the lost art of burlesque back to the forefront of pop culture. Baldwin has served as the creative director, choreographer, music director, costumer, financial head, and performer for her troupe, “Burlesque As It Was.” Her deep immersion into this art form has provided her with a rare view into the growth and evolution of the revival.

Labouring the Canadian millennium

writings on work and workers, history, and historiography

Labouring the Canadian millennium

This is a collection of commissioned essays that are purposively eclectic, but that address themes of importance in understanding labour's significance and history over the course of the last century, as well as suggesting how labour will inevitably face changing circumstances.

Labouring Canada

Class, Gender, and Race in Canadian Working-class History

Labouring Canada

This text is a collection of classic and contemporary articles exploring the nature of work in Canadian history from the late eighteenth century to the current day. Class relations and labour form the core of the volume, but attention will also be paid to the state and its relations with workers both formal and informal. The volume is designed as a core text for classes in Canadian labour/working-class history, taught out of history and labour studies departments.