Chapter

1955, Disneyland: ‘The Happiest Place on Earth’ and the Fiction of Cold War Culture

Alan Nade

in The Edinburgh Companion to Twentieth-Century Literatures in English

Published by Edinburgh University Press

Published in print June 2006 | ISBN: 9780748620111
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780748651863 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.3366/edinburgh/9780748620111.003.0011
1955, Disneyland: ‘The Happiest Place on Earth’ and the Fiction of Cold War Culture

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This chapter examines the similarities between Disneyland and the fiction of Cold War culture. It shows that both the theme park and the television show divided ‘The Happiest Place on Earth’ into four ‘lands’, which spatialised and temporalised national identity based on the principles of cinematic representation. The chapter explains how Disneyland became the figurative home of Tom Rath, the protagonist of The Man in the Gray Flannel Suit. It also takes a look at Disneyland in Vladimir Nabokov's Lolita, James Baldwin's Notes of a Native Sun and Flannery O'Connor's The Coney Island of the Mind, to name a few.

Keywords: Disneyland; Cold War culture; national identity; cinematic representation; Vladimir Nabokov; James Baldwin; Flannery O' Connor

Chapter.  7001 words. 

Subjects: Literary Studies (20th Century onwards)

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