Date of Award
The selection of the subject "The effect of European Festivals on American Entertainment" was prompted by an assignment in a College of the Pacific Summer School course, "Supervision in the Elementary School."
The project was the planning of a patrictic program in an immigrant community. Each nationality represented in the class was to provide a national impression of the homeland of his ancestors, by means of costume, song, and dance typical of the country. After an hour of very interesting entertainment which gave an introduction to the background of the foreign members of the class, all lustily sang "America," led by the Spirit of Freedom, whose lineage could be traced back to the Fathers of the American Revolution.
That imaginary class, composed of many nationalities, was really a miniature of our nation which is referred to as "The melting Pot." In order to keep this thesis within bounds, investigations have been limited to six European countries --- namely, Greece, Rome (and modern Italy), England, Germany, France, and Spain.
We in America have a tendency to hold a satisfied opinion of things American, forgetting that the basis for many of our so-called "American" customs comes from distant shores. Therefore it is rather enlightening to take such a universal celebration as Christmas and learn that very little of our "American" Christmas really originated here.
In regard to the adaptations of the ancient festivals found in the United States and their influences on both the native and foreign population here, it has been a revelation to me to see how varied and numerous have been the references to them. Without the investigation and study which I have made on the subject, allusions made to its various phases on the radio, in lectures, in conversations, in current literature, and in advertising, would have passed by un-noticed.
Veall, Florence. (1938). The effect of European festivals on American entertainment. University of the Pacific, Thesis. https://scholarlycommons.pacific.edu/uop_etds/982