Research Programs: Summer Stipends

Period of Performance

6/1/2018 - 7/31/2018

Funding Totals

$6,000.00 (approved)
$6,000.00 (awarded)

Tinsel and Rust: Hollywood Film and Postindustrial Cities in the United States

FAIN: FT-259957-18

Michael David Dwyer, PhD
Arcadia University (Glenside, PA 19038-3215)

Preparation for publication of a book-length study of the relationship between postindustrial cities and film in the United States, from the 1970s to the present.

Since the term entered popular usage in the early 1980s, the “Rust Belt” has gained considerable cultural and political pull in the United States. Not merely a descriptor for a geographical region surrounding the Great Lakes and Ohio River Valley, “the Rust Belt” serves as a potent symbol for America’s past, present, and impending future. Much of the social construction of the idea of the Rust Belt—both then and now–has occurred in popular film. Filmic representations of shuttered auto plants, unemployed laborers, and decaying downtowns have all contributed to narratives of American decline. At the same time, cities like Buffalo, Cleveland, Detroit and Pittsburgh have actively attempted to court film and television production in an effort to craft their own stories of American renewal. In my manuscript Tinsel and Rust: Hollywood Film and Postindustrial America, I examine the complicated relationship between postindustrial cities and the creative industries in the United States.

Media Coverage

Dwyer Receives NEH Grant to Study Rust Belt Cities in Film (Media Coverage)
Author(s): Caitlin Burns
Publication: Arcadia Bulletin
Date: 4/18/2018