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The Revenge of Hatpin Mary

Women, Professional Wrestling and Fan Culture in the 1950s

Chad Dell

This book may set down the myth of June Cleaver once and for all. Chad Dell deftly details a 1950s revolution in the making: millions of women of all ages flocked to wrestling arenas across the country, drawn to a parade of glistening bodies, purple satin capes and characters such as Gorgeous George and Killer Kowalski while millions more roared their approval as they watched on television. Dell’s analysis of television broadcasts, media artifacts, fan club ephemera and interviews with wrestlers and their fans paints a new portrait of women in the 1950s who embraced the power of their passions.