Facing the Music

Dancing in the Dark
A Cultural History of the Great Depression
Morris Dickstein W. W. Norton, $29.95, 624 pp.

Many a baby boomer was raised on tales of the Great Depression, tales of sharecroppers, breadlines, NRA parades, and sparing a dime for a brother in need. These often played a bigger part in our lives than Dr. Spock. My mother, who learned about John Steinbeck’s work from a savvy nun at a Brooklyn high school, regarded the depiction of the Joad family’s struggle in The Grapes of Wrath as a moral touchstone, a must-know story of human dignity imperiled. Morris Dickstein...

The remainder of this article is only available to paid subscribers.

Print subscribers to Commonweal are entitled to free access to all premium online content. Click here to purchase a print subscription, or if you’re already a print subscriber, register now for premium access.

Online-only subscriptions provide access to all premium online articles for just $34/year or $2.95/month. Click here to subscribe.

Registered users, please log in below:

Or log in with...


About the Author

The late David Castronovo wrote many books of literary and cultural criticism, including Blokes: The Bad Boys of English Literature.

Also by this author