Crime and Punishment in Postwar Los Angeles
The gossip industry underwent a fundamental transition after the war, from the gawking clatter of the classical era fan magazines to the gossip columns of Hedda Hopper and Louella Parsons and scandal sheets that so successfully harried the Hollywood community after the war. Movie stars were lucky and pretty, rich and famous. But they were as well political neophytes and their everyday lives were, thanks to the columnists after the war, lumbered with undue consequence. It was one thing for the columnists to bemoan the unearned privileges of celebrity, and then to cut folks so lucky and full of themselves down to size. But it was quite another to cast the private and personal lives of these celebrities as fundamentally anti-social and un-American, to subject the lives and loves of movie stars to a narrow and frankly unrelated notion of patriotism, one that asked movie stars to behave, or at least pretend to behave, like the rest of us.
Keywords: (Hollywood) Gossip, Hollywood scandals, Hedda Hopper, Louella Parsons, Frank Sinatra, Humphrey Bogart, Lucille Ball, C.B. DeMille, Westbrook Pegler, Sunset Boulevard, Blacklist (Hollywood Blacklist), Hollywood 10, The Big Knife
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