Joan Crawford: The Essential Biography

Joan Crawford had a lengthy career that evolved just as the movies did. From the Silent Era and on to the Sound Era, Crawford’s image and performances were carefully cultivated to cater to audience interests of the day.

Appearing in films like Our Dancing Daughters (1928) early on, to films like Grand Hotel (1932), The Women (1939), and Mildred Pierce (1945), Crawford demonstrated a broad range of skills as an actress. From the more wholesome to the shrewish, Crawford took on variety of roles that challenged her to portray many complex personalities.

Though much has been written about Crawford–and, unfortunately, quite a bit of that is not positive–Lawrence J. Quirk and William Schoell bring readers Joan Crawford: The Essential Biography to delve into her life and legacy and to also separate fact from fiction. The authors interviewed individuals who knew her, conducted much analysis and research on Crawford, and evaluated each of her films and roles to gain an effective portrayal of Crawford.

An intriguing read, Joan Crawford: The Essential Biography offers a fine portray of Crawford’s life and career, highlighting key moments both on and off-screen in her life.

Joan Crawford: The Essential Biography is available for purchase from the University Press of Kentucky.

About Annette Bochenek

Dr. Annette Bochenek of Chicago, Illinois, is an avid scholar of Hollywood’s Golden Age. She manages the Hometowns to Hollywood blog, in which she writes about her trips exploring the legacies and hometowns of Golden Age stars. Annette also hosts the “Hometowns to Hollywood” film series throughout the Chicago area. She has been featured on Turner Classic Movies and is the president of TCM Backlot’s Chicago chapter. In addition to writing for TCM Backlot, she also writes for Classic Movie Hub, Silent Film Quarterly, Nostalgia Digest, and Chicago Art Deco Society Magazine.
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