Dietrich Icon

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Product Details

Duke University Press
Publish Date
6.32 X 9.15 X 1.06 inches | 1.85 pounds
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About the Author

Gerd Gemünden is the Ted and Helen Geisel Third Century Professor in the Humanities at Dartmouth College. He is the author of Framed Visions: Popular Culture, Americanization, and the Contemporary German and Austrian Imagination and coeditor of The Cinema of Wim Wenders: Image, Narrative, and the Postmodern Condition.

Mary R. Desjardins is Associate Professor of Film and Television Studies at Dartmouth College.


"[T]he genius of the book is its inquiry into the iconic Dietrich herself. . . . [A]high standard of well-written scholarship wrapped in a beautifully produced book graced by a trove of artfully reproduced images. . . . The editors' lucid 22-page intro draws in both scholar and fan. Highly recommended." - T. Cripps, Choice
"As the product of a German studies professor and a film-studies professor respectively, Dietrich Icon is unique in its appeal to a wide scholarly audience. Even more surprising is its approachability to the casual reader who knows little, if anything, about Dietrich. . . . [T]he incredible details of its memoirs . . . and precise critical analysis allow the reader a penetrative rather than descriptive look at Dietrich. Dietrich Icon has something to offer everyone, from literary, film, and queer theorists to cultural studies and history scholars, with something for the unfamiliar reader to boot." - Lauren Indvik, The Dartmouth Review
"Gerd Gemünden and Mary R. Desjardins convincingly suggest, and the essays together prove, that Dietrich is a figure who is interesting not just in herself but also as a prism reflecting discourses on aging, stardom, feminism, film theory, authorship, authenticity, performance, and masquerade, as well as audience projections ranging from Third Reich condemnation to lesbian cult fandom."--Pamela Robertson Wojcik, author of Guilty Pleasures: Feminist Camp from Mae West to Madonna
"Most works on actresses are largely biographical in nature, with some critical evaluation of particular films and stage appearances thrown into the mix. This anthology by Gerd Gemünden and Mary R. Desjardins, however, presents serious historical and theoretical work on Dietrich's star image and career--all expressed in clear and readable language, devoid of 'jargon.'"--Lucy Fischer, author of Designing Women: Cinema, Art Deco, and the Female Form
"Dietrich Icon. . . successfully bridges the gap between academic publishing and writing that can appeal to general readership. . . The book not only has an alluring design, but the paperback edition is also reasonably priced. . . Dietrich Icon rises above the fray and encompasses successfully the aesthetic, cultural, and sexual diversity of Marlene Dietrich. To put it simply, the book is indispensable for anybody wanting to know more about the icon Dietrich."--Ulrich Bach "German Studies Review"
"[T]he editors provide an extensive summary of the many publications that have explored Dietrich's performances from ideological, formal, and, above all, psychoanalytic perspectives."--Caroline Weber "BookForum"
"[T]here is much to admire in this volume. This is an excellent book to be used in the classroom as well as a resource for any Dietrich aficionado."--Irene Javors "Screening the Past"
"Yes, it is academic in the best sense of the word: you can learn a lot but you may also enjoy the design, the wonderful photos, the careful editing."-- "Dietrich Newsletter"