American Sideshow a Review

by John Robinson

An encyclopedia is a written compendium of knowledge. The term comes from the Greek (enkuklios paideia), literally "in a circle of instruction", and more generally connoting "a well-rounded education".  Wikipeda


Marc Hartzman in his book American Sideshow has given us a written compendium of knowledge, a well-rounded education and a circle of introductions to some of the most amazing people that ever lived.


He introduces us to the many personalities that traveled America to bring excitement and relief from the day to day routines of the masses.


He reminds us that the sideshow was the entertainment of the common man, as it traveled the roads, and rails of America it brought with it the Strange and Unusual, the Fantastic and Amazing, the Exotic and the Beautiful. Amazing sights that most of America had never imagined, let alone had the opportunity to see or to experience.


On its pages and between its covers, like under the many tops that graced the midways of America, it gives us insight into what most of us will never see, it provides us with a look into a strange world that we can neither be a part of or completely understand.  After we leave it, we go back to the comfort of our lives, but it has given us a common experience,  it repulsed us, it shocked us, it entertained us, it amused us, it amazed us, and most of all it has led us into an unfamiliar place, a place of discomfort where our minds contemplate the things we have seen and fear that they may be a reflection of who we are.


American Sideshow lets us see the people that lived and loved the show, that they are really not much different than ourselves.  It teaches us that every human being in spite of their challenges are more alike than different.  We learn that the spirit wants to be recognized and respected, loved and to love. 


So Step Right this way, the show’s about to begin, it’s all Alive on the Inside of the American Sideshow.

John Robinson
Sideshow World
Preserving the Past...Promoting the Future of Sideshow
It's Always Alive on the Inside of Sideshow World

© 2005 Copyright all rights reserved


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