Going Out by David Nasaw
The Rise and Fall of Public Amusements

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Synopsis

This study tells how "show business" was invented - a journey through the vanished pleasure palaces of urban middle-class America. There was a time when "going out" was only for the rich. But at the turn of the century, "going out" became part of everyday life for almost all urban Americans as vaudeville halls, phonograph parlors, penny arcades, nickel theatres, nightclubs, dance halls, ball parks and World's Fair midways cropped up. A new middle-class cosmopolitan culture emerged, Nasaw argues, as barriers of class, ethnicity and religion dissolved. Only blacks were excluded. With many anecdotes, this book chronicles that entertainment revolution and its demise when racial barriers fell.
 

About David Nasaw

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David Nasaw is currently a professor of history and director of the Center for the Humanities at the Graduate Center of the City University of New York, he lives in Manhattan.
 
Published April 15, 1999 by Harvard University Press. 320 pages
Genres: History, Political & Social Sciences, Sports & Outdoors, Humor & Entertainment. Non-fiction

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This exception to the democratic mingling of socially diverse urban audiences served a specific purpose, argues Nasaw in a recurrent theme: to ``mute'' the social distinctions between ``decent'' audience members by elevating them above ``indecent'' blacks.

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Publishers Weekly

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An informative history of popular entertainment in the U.S. over the past two centuries.

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Publishers Weekly

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A professor of history at the City University of New York, Nasaw here presents an involving, well-crafted history of popular entertainments in the U.S. over the past two centuries, concentrating not only on the amusement businesses themselves, but also on their sociological effects.

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Entertainment Weekly

Going Out: The Rise and Fall of Public Amusements David Nasaw (BasicBooks, $25) This lively social history traces the development in the first half of the 20th century of vaudeville, nickelodeons, movies, sports, amusement parks, and world's fairs, including Alan Freed's controversial (because he...

Dec 03 1993 | Read Full Review of Going Out: The Rise and Fall ...

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