This is a fascinating autobiography of how to become an American during the 1940-50s. A globally recognized media lawyer and communications scholar, Monroe Price was born to a Jewish family in Vienna in 1938. In 1939, his family immigrated to the US where Monroe grew up. The main focus of the whole book is on the question of identity, that of a child of refugees or a 21st-century scholar and global citizen. In a series of reflections, the reader is offered a personal introduction to everyday life in early 20th-century Austria (including Jewish life, anti-Semitism, the Anschluss, and Kristallnacht-in which the author's father was arrested). Then scenes of American socialization in the Austrian/Jewish diaspora in New York City, Macon (Georgia) and Cincinatti (Ohio) focus on childhood and teenage memories about family, religion, friends, schooling as well as deeply personal issues such as home food or intimacy. Through the particular path of his own life, Price unfolds a more universal story of adjustment, and the relationship between a marginal community and the larger American pull.
Monroe E. Price is Director of The Center for Global Communication Studies at the Annenberg School for Communication at the University of Pennsylvania, and the Joseph and Sadie Danciger Professor of Law and Director of the Howard M. Squadron Program in Law, Media and Society at the Cardozo School of Law, Yeshiva University.