The University of Wisconsin Press


Film Studies

 

The Public Enemy
Edited by Henry Cohen
Tino Balio, Series Editor

Wisconsin/Warner Bros. screenplay series


The Public Enemy, a 1931 Warner Brothers gangster classic, is easily remembered as the movie in which James Cagney used Mae Clarke's nose as a grapefruit grinder. As Cagney recalls, it was just about the first time that "a woman had been treated like a broad on the screen, instead of like a delicate flower."

The ambivalence toward women is just one of the many stylistic contradictions that make The Public Enemy worth studying, not only for its intrinsic merits but also as a creative expression bending under the constraints of censorship.

Wisconsin/Warner Bros. screenplay series
Tino Balio, series editor

Henry Cohen is the author of two other books and is the founder and editor of Criminal Justice History. Tino Balio, Professor in the Department of Communication Arts at the University of Wisconsin–Madison, is the author of United Artists: The Company Built by the Stars, United Artists: The Company That Changed the Film Industry, and the editor of The American Film Industry as well as the 22 volume Wisconsin/Warner Bros. Screenplay series, all published by the University of Wisconsin Press. He directed the Wisconsin Center for Film and Theatre Research from 1966 to 1882.

Inquiries regarding review copies, events, and interviews can be directed to the publicity department at publicity@uwpress.wisc.edu or (608) 263-0734.

the cover of The Public Enemy features a movie still with Cagney and another man unloading a liquor truck. Cagney has a pistol.

December 2005

LC: 80-052292 PN
192 pp. 5 1/2 x 8 1/2 36 illus.

(ISBN-10: 0-299-08460-4,
Cloth edition is out of print.)

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ISBN 978-0-299-08464-6
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