In life, Elvis Presley went from childhood poverty to stardom, from world fame to dissipation and early death. As Greil Marcus shows, Presley's journey after death takes him even further, pushing him beyond his own frontiers to merge with the American public consciousness - and the American subconscious. As he listens in on the public conversation that recreates Elvis after death, Marcus tracks the path of Presley's resurrection. He grafts together scattered fragments of the eclectic dialogue and shows what this strange obsession with a dead Elvis can tell us about America itself.
Part 1 Pre-dead Elvis: jungle music - the all-time all-star 1950s rock 'n' roll movie; king death. Part 2 The absence of Elvis: Elvis - the ashtray; duets; tale from the crypt; the myth behind the truth behind the legend; the road away from Graceland; a view of Graceland - the absence of Elvis. Part 3 The return of Elvis Presley: the last breakfast; never bet the devil your head gallery; the king of rhythm and blues; good book on Elvis published - shocking truth revealed; ten years after - death on the installment plan. Part 4 Still dead: the man who wasn't Elvis; emanations, sightings, disappearances, or a seance of 18 mediums; a corpse in your mouth - adventures of a metaphor, or modern cannibalism; still dead - Elvis Presley without music.