Red Vienna, White Socialism, and the Blues

October 2015
8 black and white illustrations
222 pages
9x6 in
Studies in German Literature Linguistics and Culture
ISBN: 9781571139368
Format: Hardback
Library eBook
Camden House
BISAC LIT004170, HIS037070, HIS040000

Red Vienna, White Socialism, and the Blues

Ann Tizia Leitich's America

Rob McFarland

Reveals Ann Tizia Leitich, American correspondent for Austrian newspapers in the 1920s and 1930s, as an important cultural mediator between the two countries.

After the First World War, Vienna was overrun by jazz, Hollywood movies, and Fordism; its citizens were both fascinated and appalled by the waves of American ideas and products. To make sense of the American phenomenon, readers turned to Ann Tizia Leitich, the New York-based correspondent for Vienna's prominent daily Neue Freie Presse and other newspapers. Rob McFarland tells the story of Leitich's escape, occasioned by a personal crisis, from Austria to America in 1921, and of her rise as a journalist, cultural historian, and novelist. By the early 1930s, she had met President Coolidge, Senator Sol Bloom, the writer Upton Sinclair, and the critic H. L. Mencken. Her devoted readers - including the novelist Stefan Zweig and the Austrian chancellor Ignatz Seipl - sought in her witty, insightful descriptions of the United States some American vitality to invigorate their own moribund culture and economy. Chronicling Leitich's career as a journalist, cultural historian, and novelist and providing close readings of her writings about America, this book reveals her as an important cultural mediator between Austria and America.

Rob McFarland is Associate Professor of German at Brigham Young University.

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Table of Contents

Introduction: Amerika in Wien
Ancient People on New Ground: European Culture Meets American Civilization
New Movies and Neue Menschen: From Red Vienna to "Anatol on the Missouri"
Stefan Zweig's "Giant Wave of Uniformity": Colonization, Class, and the Polemics of American Mass Culture
Babbitt's Wives and Lovers: White Socialism, Gender, and the Poetry of the Machine
Hymns to Chicago: Progress, Myth, and the Music of the Metropolis
The Danube Blues: From American Mass Culture to Austrian Culture for the Masses
Epilogue: Delightful Facts and Convenient Fictions; Reconsidering Ann Tizia Leitich's Austria in the Context of Her American Writings
Ann Tizia Leitich: A Selected Bibliography


The greatest strength of [Rob McFarland's book] is the broad range of topics [he] connects to Ann Tizia Leitich's cultural project. By contextualizing the Austrian's writings in [relation to] significant political, literary, economic, media, and gender discourses on Americanization in interwar Europe, the book offers valuable insights for readers interested in early twentieth-century cultural history as well as in the author herself. . . . [E]ngaging . . .[,] makes an invaluable contribution to the field of cultural studies. WOMEN IN GERMAN NEWSLETTER

[McFarland's] account of Leitich's life and works thoroughly convinces the reader of the validity and interest of his project. Writing with great verve, [he] explores Leitich's early journalism in satisfying detail. AUSTRIAN HISTORY YEARBOOK 48 (2017)

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