American Studies
American Studies

Dr. Janet Davis Op-Ed on CNN.com

Wed, January 18, 2017
Dr. Janet Davis Op-Ed on CNN.com

Congratulations to Dr. Janet Davis, who recently had a Op-Ed published on CNN's website. Dr. Davis's article is about the pending closure of both the Big Apple and Ringling Brothers and Barnum and Bailey circuses. There's an excerpt, below, and you can read the rest of the article here.

"Likewise, Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey confronted adversity throughout its 146-year history. On July 6, 1944, a horrific big-top fire at Hartford, Connecticut, killed 167 people and injured hundreds of others. The circus limped back to its winter quarters in Sarasota, Florida; five circus officials were tried, convicted (and later pardoned) for involuntary manslaughter.
 
On July 16, 1956, the circus performed its last show under a canvas big top at Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania: principal owner John Ringling North decided that labor costs and unionization battles had become too costly to preserve the big-top show. One thousand jobs vanished and the circus performed at indoor arenas thereafter.
Nonetheless, the American circus is hardly dead. In fact, circus arts are flourishing. Today, there are approximately 85 circus schools and training centers scattered across America, which teach children essential skills in trapeze, juggling, wire-walking, clowning, tumbling and teamwork. One-ring shows are thriving, from the highly profitable Montreal-based Cirque du Soleil to local productions, such as Circus Flora in St. Louis."
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