Pinstripe Nation: The New York Yankees and American Culture
Reviewed by Tony Calandrillo
In Pinstripe Nation: The New York Yankees and American Culture, Baker University professor Will Bishop explores how the success, failure, and attendant drama of the New York Yankees fits into the larger narrative of American culture, and how both the Yankees and that culture constantly mirror each other in the 20th century. In the introduction, Bishop makes this point clearly when he states that “what plays out in our little cocoons of sport is so often a close parallel of what is going on outside of them, only dramatized in a way that frequently makes it clearer.” According to the author, “the narratives that play out in the world of sport often are somehow able to help us better see and understand who we are as a society, what we value, and how we are changing.” For the particular case of the New York Yankees, this mirror narrative sees that the Yankees’ story of success parallels and is interwoven with the narrative of American success in the twentieth century. For his book, Bishop uses the work of Roland Barthes in relation to unspoken communication through symbols to illustrate how the Yankees have been used as an American cultural icon from their rise to national prominence in the 1920s through the end of the twentieth century.