Nightclubs and Bread Lines: Depression Era Foodways On Film

April 29, 2011

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Michael Gebert

Perhaps no historical event went so quickly and directly onto movie screens as the Great Depression. Food writer and film buff Michael Gebert talks about how Depression Era foodways were reflected in films of the period, using clips depicting food in every context--from soup kitchens to glitzy nightspots, from Automats to home kitchens.

Michael Gebert is a freelance writer and blogs about food at Sky Full of Bacon and movies at Nitrateville.com.

This event was recorded as part of the Greater Midwest Foodways Alliance Fourth Annual Symposium “Midwest Eats! Foodways of the Great Depression,” which focuses on the Great Depression’s impact on our culinary traditions.  Other events from this symposium recorded by Chicago Amplified—listed in the order they were presented—are as follows:

Midwest Eats!  Foodways of the Great Depression
Nightclubs and Bread Lines: Depression Era Foodways On Film
Templeton Rye of Iowa: Its History During and Just After the Prohibition
This Land is Whose land?
John Drury, Ace Chicago Restaurant Reporter of the 1930s
Community Canning in the Depression: A Case Study
Co-Eds at the Co-op: Student Depression-Era Foodways at Old Normal
Greater Midwest Foodways Heirloom Recipe Competition
No Longer does the Holiday Table Groan Under the Weight of Food
Steaks and Shakes and the Great Depression
Beer Production after Prohibition: Setting the Stage for the Rise of the Mega-breweries
The American (Bad) Dream: Soup Kitchens and European Immigrants in Chicago in the 1930s
Chicago’s Maxwell Street

Recorded Friday, April 29, 2011 at Kendall College.