Review: Woman to Woman

Dear Constant Reader,

I’ve just acquired some new books, so I have to step up the reviewing. At the moment I have more than a dozen books to review — and some of them are the ones that have been in the library the longest!

“Woman to Woman: Ann Corio and the Rehabilitation of American Burlesque.” by Julie N. Vogt, PhD (2010).

I met Julie Uberblonde at the Great Burlesque Exposition of 2010 and we chatted about her doctoral dissertation about Ann Corio. She had some strong opinions about some popularly held beliefs of burlesque history. I was hopeful that she would eventually publish her dissertation as a book for more general audiences. It was a shock to learn that she died this past December. So, it was a little bittersweet to read her dissertation, knowing that there are so few academically researched books on burlesque.

Her main topic is on the creation of Ann Corio’s style of burlesque as a brand and marketing it to women. However, she also uses Ann Corio as a focus to delve into a critical study of burlesque, as a performance art and as a business. Along the way, she provides a review of the existing literature and she dispels some burlesque myths, a number of which Ann Corio appears to have created.

There’s a lot of information and some excellent research, but I’ll be honest — despite the topic, it’s still a doctoral dissertation and parts of it get a bit thick with academese. I’m pretty fluent in academese, so I was able to mine the gold. And there’s a lot of it.

Dr. Vogt’s death was a terrible loss for her family, friends, and students, and also for the study of burlesque.

Published in: on 5 April 2012 at 1:41 pm  Leave a Comment  

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