Main Street Amusements: Movies and Commercial Entertainment in a Southern City, 1896-1930


Surveying the growth of local movie and vaudeville theaters from 1906 to 1916, Waller analyzes reform efforts and protest campaigns that concerned theater safety codes, Sunday film showings, censorship, and, most notably, the highly controversial screening of The Birth of a Nation. Providing both the black and white civic and church responses to these developments, he demonstrates how the emergence of movies fostered the rise of Lexington's contradictory self-image as both a cosmopolitan center and a guardian of traditional ...

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