Book Review: Charlie Brown’s America: The Popular Politics of Peanuts by Blake Scott Ball
Blake Scott Ball’s biography of Peanuts’ cultural life chronologically documents the development of Charles M. Schulz’s work from a daily comic strip in seven US newspapers, to a national icon that articulated Cold War anxieties and the values of a past era. Though Peanuts is an artefact of extensive cultural significance, as Ball points out it has been ‘woefully understudied’ . Ball’s study is the first to provide an extensive investigation into Peanuts’ place in Cold War American life.
Book Review: The Beats: A Literary History by Steven Belletto
Steven Belletto’s impeccably well-researched literary history, The Beats, traces the Beat Generation’s interrelationship between creativity, a writer’s life and literary connections, and literary production. The synergies, networks, and affiliations Belletto highlights are invaluable, and prove his point that the ‘richest way to appreciate individual Beat texts is in relation to one another.’ (xi)