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The Essential Ellen Willis$
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Ellen Willis and Nona Willis Aronowitz

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780816681204

Published to Minnesota Scholarship Online: August 2015

DOI: 10.5749/minnesota/9780816681204.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM MINNESOTA SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.minnesota.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of Minnesota Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in MNSO for personal use.date: 21 September 2021

Our Mobsters, Ourselves

Our Mobsters, Ourselves

Chapter:
(p.429) Our Mobsters, Ourselves
Source:
The Essential Ellen Willis
Author(s):

Nona Willis Aronowitz

Publisher:
University of Minnesota Press
DOI:10.5749/minnesota/9780816681204.003.0051

This chapter analyzes The Sopranos as a meditation on the nature of morality, the possibility of redemption, and the legacy of Sigmund Freud. During its two-year run, The Sopranos, an HBO series by David Chase, offered plenty of sex, violence, domestic melodrama, and comic irony; a deft depiction of class and cultural relations among various subgroups and generations of Italian-Americans; a gloss on the manners and mores of the fin-de-siècle American middle-class family; and perfect-pitch acting led by James Gandolfini as Tony Soprano and Edie Falco as his wife. Self-consciousness is a conspicuous feature of Tony Soprano’s world even aside from therapy. Parallels between psychotherapy and religion are reinforced by the adventures of the other Sopranos characters, who are all defined by their spiritual state. The Sopranos has been called a parable of corruption and hypocrisy in the postmodern middle class and a critique of sexuality, the family and male-female relations in the wake of feminism.

Keywords:   feminism, The Sopranos, morality, Italian-Americans, James Gandolfini, Edie Falco, psychotherapy, middle class, sexuality, family

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