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Celebrity in Pop Culture

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April 8, 2013

Popular Culture

This paper is an analysis of chapter six in the book Celebrity Culture and The

American Dream, by Karen Sternheimer and the film Revolutionary Road. First will be

the discussion of chapter six. Second will be the discussion of Revolutionary Road.

Lastly will be a comparison of the two.

Sternheimer explores three questions in chapter six. The first question is how and

why is middle class bliss central in celebrity stories after the war? Next is who is

excluded from the suburban utopia? And finally, why did these utopian fantasies require

woman to devote themselves primarily to the domestic sphere?

In this film Revolutionary Road the premise is based on suburban utopia in the

1950s. The story is about a couple named Frank and April Wheeler. To the outside world

the Wheelers were living the American Dream with a perfect family. He was the primary

bread winner and she was the stay at home mom providing complete domestic bliss. On

the inside their marriage was troubled and neither of them were satisfied with their lives.

After getting married and April becoming pregnant, they move to suburban

Connecticut. Their address was 146 Revolutionary Road. The significance of title of the

film represents not only their address but also the revolution that was also occurring in

America after World War II.

This film represents the Wheelers living the suburban family dream. According to

Sternheimer the suburban family dream is happiness could be found in a home you own,

shared with a spouse, and filled with children. The Wheelers had one person supporting

the family (Frank) and one person who stayed home and devoted herself to the home life

(April). The Wheelers on the outside had everything that Sternheimer describes as

suburban utopia. But just like Sternheimer describes in chapter six neither of the




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