Studies in Local Popular Culture
Covering Niagara: Studies in Local Popular Culture closely examines some of the myriad forms of popular culture in the Niagara region of Canada. Essays consider common assumptions and definitions of what popular culture is and seek to determine whether broad theories of popular culture can explain or make sense of localized instances of popular culture and the cultural experiences of people in their daily lives. Among the many topics covered are local bicycle parades and war memorials, cooking and wine culture, radio and movie-going, music stores and music scenes, tourist sites, and blackface minstrel shows. The authors approach their subjects from a variety of critical and historical perspectives and employ a range of methodologies that includes cultural studies, textual analysis, archival research, and participant interviews. Altogether, Covering Niagara provides a richly diverse mapping of the popular culture of a particular area of Canada and demonstrates the complexities of everyday culture.
``Covering Niagara, an original study of local popular culture in the Golden Horseshoe area, uses a variety of critical and historical perspectives and a wide range of methodologies, including cultural studies, textual analysis, archival research, and participant interviews, to map out this borderlands green belt / fruit belt / rust belt that also calls itself home to a World Biosphere site (the Escarpment), a natural wonder (Niagara Falls), and a tourist mecca (Clifton Hill). The collection as a whole contains fifteen chapters, divided into five broad sections. ''- Linda Revie, University of Toronto Quarterly, Volume 81, number 3, Summer 2012
``Covering Niagara is an original contribution, not only to our understanding of this particular Canadian ‘region’ but to regional cultural studies in Canada generally. It clearly grows out of ongoing, collaborative research activity involving many of the contributors and, as such, it shows what sustained, regionally focused research can do. ''- William Straw, professor of Communications at McGill University and co-editor ofCirculation and the City: Essays on Urban Culture (2010).
``Covering Niagara will finally bust loose a secret that's been all too well concealed from all too many people: because of its unique geographical position, as a kind of radar dish picking up influences from all compass points, both sides of the border and the myriad backgrounds of the millions who have settled there, it's a pop cultural torrent. ''- Geoff Pevere, broadcaster, author, critic, and former Niagara resident