The Contemporary Hollywood Reader
Edited by Toby Miller
Routledge – 2009 – 558 pages
We are all experts about Hollywood. We have to be, given its iconic power as the global source of so much entertainment. Designed to add to existing expertise as a movie-goer, The Contemporary Hollywood Reader enables students to enter into the thematic, critical, artistic, economic, and political debates on Hollywood.
The Contemporary Hollywood Reader is a dynamic selection of scholarly writings on Hollywood from the post-World War II period onwards, divided into three sections, each with contextualizing introductions from the Editor. The sections, Production, Text, and Circulation, address all the major perspectives on Hollywood allowing equal attention to the field, in both thematic and disciplinary senses.
In this collection, Toby Miller offers a plural, open guide to major scholarly tendencies in writing about Hollywood with a mixture of familiar and less familiar works. While the Reader draws on research undertaken within US-UK film or cinema studies, it also ventures further afield, bringing together the most stimulating materials available on the subject.
'The multifaceted nature of contemporary Hollywood is revealed in this most comprehensive volume that brings together classical essays and unorthodox selections. It consolidates writing from all those fields that are preoccupied with it: business and marketing, geography and law, media and cultural studies, political science and visual anthropology, gender and film studies. And sociology, of course.' – Dina Iordanova, Director of the Centre for Film Studies, University of St. Andrews, Scotland, UK
'Toby Miller has done it again! This star-studded collection will guide students, scholars and others interested in understanding contemporary Hollywood. From production through texts to audiences – it's all here in this valuable collection of classic works that will undoubtedly become a classic itself.' – Janet Wasko, Knight Chair in Communication Research, University of Oregon, USA
'This is not your standard Hollywood reader. Toby Miller's collection approaches the analysis of contemporary Hollywood from an unusually wide variety of disciplinary, methodological and political perspectives, taking us away from the conventional canons of texts and stars and towards a closer and more critical focus on the systems and structures which produce them, and which make them the way they are.' – Graeme Turner, The Centre for Critical and Cultural Studies, University of Queensland, Australia.
'The Contemporary Hollywood Reader is broad in scope, but remains fixed around a blend of political economy, critical cultrual studies and some more eclectic examinations of text and theory.' Scope, Issue 20, June 2011
Part 1: Production. 1. Introduction 2. Structure. Hollywood Genres and the Production of Culture Perspective. Digital Film and ‘Late’ Capitalism. Economic and Institutional Analysis: Hollywood as Monopoly Capitalism. Vertical Integration in Motion Pictures. 3. Artists. Women and Men in Film: Gender Inequality Among Writers in a Culture Industry. Double Jeopardy in Hollywood: Age and Gender in the Careers of Film Actors, 1926–1999. The Twilight Zone of Contemporary Hollywood Production. The Lady in the Tutti-Frutti Hat: Carmen Miranda, a Spectacle of Ethnicity. Studs Have Feelings, Too: Warren Beatty and the Question of Star Discourse and Gender. The Star and the Commodity: Notes Towards a Performance Theory of Stardom. 4. Globalization. Chinese Diaspora and Orientalism in Globalized Cultural Production: Ang Lee’s Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon. New Zealand as Middle Earth: Local and Global Popular Communication in a Small Nation. Hollywood and the World: The Geography of Motion-Picture Distribution and Marketing. Behind the Scenes: How Transnational Firms are Constructing a New International Division of Labor in Media Work. PART 2: Text. 1. Introduction. 2. Genre. Genre. Out of What Past? Notes on the B Film Noir. 3. Pleasure. Miranda Prorsus: Encyclical Letter on Motion Pictures, Radio and Television. Serious Pleasures: Cinematic Pleasure and the Notion of Fun. Lost in the Funhouse. Throwing Shade in the Kingdom. 4. Representation. A Circus of Dreams and Lies: The Black Film Wave at Middle Age. Women and Smoking in Hollywood Movies: A Content Analysis. A Rose is a Rose? Real Women and a Lost War. Citizen Chicano: The Trials and Titillations of Ethnicity in the American Cinema, 1935-1962. Reel Bad Arabs: How Hollywood Vilifies a People. PART 3: Circulation. 1. Introduction. 2. Distribution. Film Distribution as Media: Mapping Difference in the Bolivian Cinemascape. Marketing the Hollywood Blockbuster in France. How Critical are Critical Reviews? The Box Office Effects of Film Critics, Star Power, and Budgets. 3. Audiences. Cowboys and Indians: Perceptions of Western Films Among American Indians and Anglos. It’s the Language of Film!: Young Film Audiences on Hollywood and Europe. Cultural Discount and Cross-Culture Predictability: Examining the Box Office Performance of American Movies in Hong Kong. 4. Government. The Celebrity Image and Cultural Identity: Publicity Rights and the Subaltern Politics of Gender. Government Support to the Film Industry in the United States. Will Work for Copyrights: The Cultural Policy of Anti-Piracy Campaigns. 5. Globalization. Cultural Exchange. The Globalization of Hollywood. America the Menace: France’s Feud with Hollywood.
Toby Miller is Professor of Media & Cultural Studies at the University of California, Riverside. His teaching and research cover media, sport, labor, gender, race, citizenship, politics, and cultural policy. Toby is the author and editor of over 20 volumes, and has published essays in over 100 journals and books. His current research covers the success of Hollywood overseas, the links between culture and citizenship, and anti-Americanism.