This essay argues that Eddie Cantor was so popular across so many different media in the early years of the Great Depression because his complex comic persona enabled him to address prevailing anxieties and to use the license of comedy to offer a strong class critique of the rich and powerful, to symbolically restore lost masculinity and normative gender relations, and to present a vision of a more inclusive white American identity at a time of profound social and economic crisis.

You do not currently have access to this content.