Press Release: Kercher, Revel with a Cause

August 27, 2006

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Revel with a Cause is the first comprehensive history of the satiric humor that flourished during the postwar era—an era that greatly resembles our own politically conservative times. Much like the War on Terror, the Cold War and the fears and anxieties it inspired were used to justify a crackdown on political dissent under the guise of patriotism. But, as Kercher here shows, an impressive range of creative humorists—from incisive cartoonists like Walt Kelly to outragous rebels like Lenny Bruce—responded with defiant wit. These non-conformisats were a crucial voice of criticism and dissent, attacking the supression of civil liberties, Cold War foreign policy, a seething racial crisis, and stifiling social conformity.
Revel with a Cause will be indispensible to anyone fascinated by the intersection of popular culture and politics—or anyone who simply wants to relish some great American humor.
Read the press release. Read an excerpt from the book.

One Response to Press Release: Kercher, Revel with a Cause

  1. Joseph Dunphy on September 29, 2007 at 12:31 pmi

    My initial reaction, one admittedly uninformed by a reading of the book in question, is one of skepticism. I’ve seen modern graffiti, and very little of it contains representational content; cave art, on the other hand, has such in abundance.
    If the subject matter was limited, then so would have been life in a semi-frozen near wasteland, in which starvation was never far away. People create art about what matters to them, and if you’re starving, food is what matters to you. Perhaps I’m missing something, and maybe I’ll even see what that is when I pick up a copy of the book, but I find myself wondering if maybe somebody is projecting modern assumptions onto a severely pre-modern era.
    How much of a sharp divide between what we would now think of as “adolescence” and “adulthood” could there have been in a preliterate era in which every hunter was needed from the moment he could hold a spear?

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