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Book: On the Irish Waterfront

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On the Irish Waterfront: The Crusader, the Movie, and the Soul of the Port of New York

By James T. Fisher

Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press, 2009

Hardcover, 6.5” x 9.5”, 373 pages. 

Price: $30

Members: $24

Site of the world’s busiest and most lucrative harbor throughout the first half of the twentieth century, the Port of New York was also the historic preserve of Irish American gangsters, politicians, longshoremen’s union leaders, and powerful Roman Catholic pastors. This is the demimonde depicted to stunning effect in Elia Kazan’s On the Waterfront (1954) and into which James T. Fisher takes readers in this remarkable and engaging historical account of the classic film’s backstory. 


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