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An Excursion into the Lower Depths: Hollywood, Urban Primitivism, and "St. Louis Blues," 1929-1937

Peter Stanfield
Cinema Journal
Vol. 41, No. 2 (Winter, 2002), pp. 84-108
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/1225853
Page Count: 25
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An Excursion into the Lower Depths: Hollywood, Urban Primitivism, and "St. Louis Blues," 1929-1937
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Abstract

This essay considers how Hollywood presented the song "St. Louis Blues" in a number of movies during the early to mid-1930s. It argues that the tune's history and accumulated use in films enabled Hollywood to employ it in an increasingly complex manner to evoke essential questions about female sexuality, class, and race.

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