Stoogeology

Essays on the Three Stooges

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About the Book

In the world of slapstick comedy, few are more beloved than the Three Stooges. Throughout their 190 short films, they consistently delivered physical, verbal and situational comedy in new and creative ways. Following the trio from outer space to ancient Rome, this volume provides an in-depth look at their comedy and its impact on twentieth century art, culture and thought. This analysis reveals new insights into the language, literary structure, politics, race, gender, ethnicity and even psychology of the classic shorts. It discusses the elements of surrealism within the Stooges films, exploring the many ways in which they created their own reality regardless of time and space. The portrayal of women and minorities and the role of the mistake in Stooges’ works are also addressed. Moreover, the book examines the impact that the Columbia Studios style and the austerity of its Short Subjects Department had on the work of the Three Stooges, films that ironically have outlasted more costly and celebrated productions.

About the Author(s)

Peter Seely is professor and department chair of Communication Arts at Benedictine University in Lisle, Illinois. He lives in Chicago.
Gail W. Pieper is an adjunct professor of Communication Arts at Benedictine University.

Bibliographic Details

Edited by Peter Seely and Gail W. Pieper
Format: softcover (6 x 9)
Pages: 280
Bibliographic Info: 12 photos, filmography, appendix, notes, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2007
pISBN: 978-0-7864-2920-2
eISBN: 978-1-4766-1079-5
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments      v
Preface      1
Introduction      3

1. THE AESTHETICS OF STOOGE FILMMAKING      11
2. STOOGE PSYCHOLOGY AND RELIGION      95
3. THE STOOGES GO TO WAR      145
4. RACE, ETHNICITY, AND GENDER IN STOOGE FILMS      179

Appendix: Three Stooges Films for Columbia (1934–1959)      251
Bibliography      255
Contributors      261
Index      265

Book Reviews & Awards

“compelling…fascinating…recommended”—Choice; “interesting and well-researched”—Film and History; “exhaustive…one-of-a-kind…will provide much food for thought…refreshing…highly recommend[ed]”—Three Stooges Journal.