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  • Acknowledgments  ix
    Introduction: What Lies beyond Histories of Exceptionalism and Cultures of Authenticity / Thomas Jessen Adams, Sue Mobley, and Mat Sakekeeny  1
    Part One. Constructing Exceptional New Orleans
    1. La Catrina: The Mexican Specter of New Orleans / Shannon Lee Dawdy  35
    2. Charles Gayarré and the Imagining of an Exceptional City: The Literary Roots of the Creole City / Rien Fertel  55
    3. Phony City: Under the Skin of Authenticity / Aaron Nyerges  72
    Part Two. Producing Authentic New Orleans
    4. "Things You'd Imagine Zulu Tribes to Do": The Zulu Parade in New Orleans Carnival / Felipe Smith  93
    5. The Saga of the Junkyard Dog / Bryan Wagner  117
    6. Local, Native, Creole, Black: Claiming Belonging, Producing Autochthony / Helen A. Regis  138
    7. The Contradictions of the Film Welfare Economy, or, For the Love of Treme / Vicki Mayer, Heidi Schmalbach, and Toby Miller  162
    Part Three. What Is New Orleans Identity?
    8. "Queers, Fairies, and Ne'er-Do-Wells": Rethinking the Notion of a Sexually Liberated New Orleans / Alecia P. Long  179
    9. Building Black Suburbs in New Orleans / Vern Baxter and Maria Casati
    10. Refugee Pastoralism: Vietnamese American Self-Representation in New Orleans / Marguerite Nguyen  219
    Part Four. Predictive City?
    11. Boosting the Private Sector: Federal Aid and Downtown Development in the 1970s / Megan French-Marcelin  241
    12. What's Left for New Orleans? The People's Reconstruction and the Limits of Anarcho-Liberalism / Cedric G. Johnson  261
    13. Neoliberal Futures: Post-Katrina New Orleans, Volunteers, and the Ongoing Allure of Exceptionalism / Vincanne Adams  288
    14. The Myth of Authenticity and Its Impact on Politics—in New Orleans and Beyond / Adolph Reed Jr.  307
    References  327
    Contributors  351
  • Vincanne Adams

    Vern Baxter

    Maria Celeste Casati Allegretti

    Shannon Lee Dawdy

    Rien Fertel

    Megan French-Marcelin

    Cedric Johnson

    Alecia P. Long

    Vicki Mayer

    Toby Miller

    Sue Mobley

    Marguerite Nguyen

    Aaron Nyerges

    Adolph Reed

    Helen Regis

    Heidi Schmalbach

    Felipe Smith

    Bryan Wagner

  • “This is NOLA unmasked: a brave and unflinching critique of the myth of the Big Easy. In fact, as these essays argue so powerfully, no southern city is less at ease or more pervaded by class and racial tension.” — Mike Davis

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  • Description

    Approached as a wellspring of cultural authenticity and historical exceptionality, New Orleans appears in opposition to a nation perpetually driven by progress. Remaking New Orleans shows how this narrative is rooted in a romantic cultural tradition, continuously repackaged through the twin engines of tourism and economic development, and supported by research that has isolated the city from comparison and left unquestioned its entrenched inequality. Working against this feedback loop, the contributors place New Orleans at the forefront of national patterns of urban planning, place-branding, structural inequality, and racialization. Nontraditional sites like professional wrestling matches, middle-class black suburbs, and Vietnamese gardens take precedence over clichéd renderings of Creole cuisine, voodoo queens, and hot jazz. Covering the city's founding through its present and highlighting changing political and social formations, this volume remakes New Orleans as a rich site for understanding the quintessential concerns of American cities.

    Contributors. Thomas Jessen Adams, Vincanne Adams, Vern Baxter, Maria Celeste Casati Allegretti, Shannon Lee Dawdy, Rien Fertel, Megan French-Marcelin, Cedric G. Johnson, Alecia P. Long, Vicki Mayer, Toby Miller, Sue Mobley, Marguerite Nguyen, Aaron Nyerges, Adolph Reed Jr., Helen A. Regis, Matt Sakakeeny, Heidi Schmalbach, Felipe Smith, Bryan Wagner

    About The Author(s)

    Thomas Jessen Adams is Lecturer in History and American Studies, Academic Director of the United States Studies Centre at the University of Sydney, and coeditor of Working in the Big Easy: The History and Politics of Labor in New Orleans.

    Matt Sakakeeny is Associate Professor of Music at Tulane University and author of Roll With It: Brass Bands in the Streets of New Orleans, also published by Duke University Press.
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