The Cooperstown Symposium on Baseball and American Culture, 2009–2010

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About the Book

The Cooperstown Symposium on Baseball and American Culture, 2009–2010 is an anthology of scholarly essays that utilize the national game to examine topics whose import extends beyond the ballpark and constitute a significant academic contribution to baseball literature. The essays represent sixteen of the leading presentations from the two most recent proceedings of the annual Cooperstown Symposium on Baseball and American Culture, held, respectively, on June 3–5, 2009, and June 2–4, 2010.
The anthology is divided into five parts: Baseball as Culture: Dance, Literature, National Character, and Myth; Constructing Baseball Heroes; Blacks in Baseball: From Segregation to Conflicted Integration; The Enterprise of Baseball: Economics and Entrepreneurs; and Genesis and Legacy of Baseball Scholarship, which features an essay written by the co-creator of baseball scholarship, Dorothy Seymour Mills.

About the Author(s)

William M. Simons is professor of history at the State University of New York–Oneonta.

Bibliographic Details

Edited by William M. Simons
Format: softcover (6 x 9)
Pages: 270
Bibliographic Info: tables, notes, index
Copyright Date: 2011
pISBN: 978-0-7864-3570-8
eISBN: 978-0-7864-8631-1
Imprint: McFarland
Series: Cooperstown Symposium Series

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments      vii
Introduction
William M. Simons      1

PART I: BASEBALL AS CULTURE: DANCE, LITERATURE, NATIONAL CHARACTER, AND MYTH
Plié Ball! Baseball in American Dance
Jeff Katz      24
On the Brink: Babe Ruth in Dennis Lehane’s The Given Day
Patricia L. Bryan and Thomas Wolf      42
The Golem, the Rabbi, and “That Long-Sought Hebrew Star”: Jews in 1920s Baseball
William M. Simons      57
“The crowd began to shout ‘Atta boy,’ with a Lancashire accent”: The English Response to Baseball Exhibition Games in the Early 20th Century
Beth Hise      78
The Little Lefty: Southpaw Perceptions and Reality
Wayne Patterson      91

PART II: CONSTRUCTING BASEBALL HEROES
Ty Cobb and the Culture of Honor
Steve Tripp      106
The Sinner and the Saint: National Magazine Coverage of Ty Cobb and Christy Mathewson, 1900–1928
Amber Roessner      124
The Making of Charlie Hustle: Pete Rose and the American Dream, 1963–1985
Todd F. McDorman      140

PART III: BLACKS IN BASEBALL: FROM SEGREGATION TO CONFLICTED INTEGRATION
The East-West Game: All-Stars and Negro League Finances
Kenneth Winter and Michael J. Haupert      156
Playing in the Gray Area: Black Baseball and Its Jewish “Middleman” Economy
Roberta J. Newman and Joel Nathan Rosen      172
A Calculus of Color: The Slow Integration of the American League, 1947–1959
Robert Kuhn McGregor      181
“The Plantation Owner” and “Brother Vida Blue”: Charlie Finley, Vida Blue, and the Politics of Race in Oakland
Ron Briley      198

PART IV: THE ENTERPRISE OF BASEBALL: ECONOMICS AND ENTREPRENEURS
How World War I Nearly Brought Down Professional Baseball
Charles DeMotte      214
Babe Ruth vs. Baby Ruth: The Quest for a Candy Bar
Charles A. Poekel, Jr.      225
Branch Rickey Versus Larry MacPhail: How a Rivalry Turned Feud Impacted Major League Baseball on the Eve of Racial Integration
Lee Lowenfish and William Marshall      229

PART V: THE GENESIS AND LEGACY OF BASEBALL SCHOLARSHIP
Using Baseball
Dorothy Seymour Mills      240
Index      247

Book Reviews & Awards

  • “Excellent…useful and engaging…essential”—Journal of Sport History.