The Cajuns

The Cajuns

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The past sixty years have shaped and reshaped the group of French-speaking Louisiana people known as the Cajuns. During this period they have become much like other Americans and yet have remained strikingly distinct. qThe Cajuns: Americanization of a Peopleq explores these six decades and analyzes the forces that had an impact on Louisiana's Acadiana. In the 1940s, when America entered World War II, so too did the isolated Cajuns. Cajun soldiers fought alongside troops from Brooklyn and Berkeley and absorbed aspects of new cultures. In the 1950s as rock 'n' roll and television crackled across Louisiana airwaves, Cajun music makers responded with their own distinct versions. In the 1960s, empowerment and liberation movements turned the South upside down. During the 1980s, as things Cajun became an absorbing national fad, qCajunq became a kind of brand identity used for selling everything from swamp tours to boxed rice dinners. At the dawn of the twenty-first century, the advent of a new information age launched qCyber-Cajunsq onto a worldwide web. All these forces have pushed and pulled at the fabric of Cajun life but have not destroyed it. A Cajun himself, the author of this book has an intense personal fascination in his people. By linking seemingly local events in the Cajuns' once isolated south Louisiana homeland to national and even global events, Bernard demonstrates that by the middle of the twentieth century the Cajuns for the first time in their ethnic story were engulfed in the currents of mainstream American life and yet continued to make outstandingly distinct contributions.... and Milwaukee beer brewed a€œin the time-honored Cajun traditiona€ despite the fact that Cajuns had no beer-making tradition. ... Pizza Hut offered Cajun Pizza, for instance, while Bennigana#39;s promoted Cajun Chicken Salad. ... marketed Cajun-Fried Chicken, Blackened-Cajun Chicken, Cajun Chicken Fingers, and Spicy Cajun Chicken Pasta. Shoneya#39;s publicized a shrimp dinner called the Big Boudreaux and another featuring shrimp served in something called Cajun Ya Ya sauce.

Title:The Cajuns
Author:Shane K. Bernard
Publisher:Univ. Press of Mississippi - 2009-09-28


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