Steel Chair to the Head: The Pleasure and Pain of Professional Wrestling


Product Details

Duke University Press
Publish Date
6.48 X 0.99 X 8.84 inches | 1.17 pounds
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About the Author

Nicholas Sammond is Assistant Professor of Cinema Studies at the University of Toronto. He is the author of Babes in Tomorrowland: Walt Disney and the Making of the American Child, 1930-1960, also published by Duke University Press.


"Steel Chair to the Head is an exceptionally smart and well-crafted collection that will be a valuable resource for popular culture scholars of all stripes. From start to finish, there's not a weak essay in the book. One of the best anthologies--on popular culture or anything else--that I've read in a long time."--Gilbert B. Rodman, author of Elvis after Elvis: The Posthumous Career of a Living Legend
"The mat is the place where sport and entertainment smack down. This excellent collection of greatest hits and latest memories of wrestling teases out the contradictions of this infinitely frustrating, excessive spectacle of domination and parody."--Toby Miller, author of Sportsex
"Why do millions of pro wrestling fans spend their Saturday nights watching well-oiled, muscled and costumed men performing in a well-rehearsed stage play in which the winner is decided days earlier? What attracts devotees to this sport? Editor Sammond and a host of academics answer these and many other questions, explaining what they think really goes on inside and outside that ring. . . ."--Publishers Weekly
"Steel Chair to the Head . . . serves 14 arguments that swell over the simple fluff and shallow violence and pry deeper into the wet, sticky blood of the antagonists, the heart of the industry narrative, and its continuous thud and ritualistic timing for wrestling's own cultural reflection. . . . An unparalleled look at the cultural interaction wrestling has with history and the world. . . . A wrestling fan's best friend. . . ."--Nathaniel G. Moore "Verbicide "
"Steel Chair To the Head is a truly fascinating look at the sport we love from a couple of steps back. . . . There's no book out there quite as a broad-ranging as Steel Chair To the Head."--Greg Oliver "Slam! Sports "
"Steel Chair's contributors perform a good-faith service in rescuing this unfairly, if understandably, maligned 'sports-entertainment' from the 'garbage' realm of 'pornography propaganda'. . . ."--Andrew Hultkrans "Bookforum "
"Provides readers with a deeper understanding of professional wrestling than heretofore available in the academic literature. . . . Insightful. . . . Excellent. . . . Highly recommended."--D.M. Furst "Choice "