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Pursuits of Happiness: The Hollywood Comedy of Remarriage

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Overview

Each of the seven chapters that follow contains an account of my experience of a film made in Hollywood between 1934 and 1949.
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Editorial Reviews

Times Literary Supplement

No book about the art of Hollywood I have ever read can make its readers stop and think more effectively than this one.
— S. S. Prawer

October

This is a voice like no other in philosophy, today or ever.
— Arthur C. Danto

American Film

The great achievement of…Pursuits of Happiness is that it finally provides a solid framework for the serious discussion of the great dialogue comedies of the thirties and forties, perhaps the most revived and loved movies of Hollywood's golden period.
— Al LaValley

London Review of Books

This just must be, in its close readings and its stunning associations, one of the most compelling accounts of its kind. The fact is, it just is its kind.
— Geoffrey Hawthorn

Journal of Aesthetic Education

Stanley Cavell's book succeeds brilliantly…The individual 'readings' of the films and the general conceptual plan in which they are embedded are both so rich and rewarding that…'brilliant'…seems an understatement.
— Gerald Mast

Times Literary Supplement - S. S. Prawer
No book about the art of Hollywood I have ever read can make its readers stop and think more effectively than this one.
October - Arthur C. Danto
This is a voice like no other in philosophy, today or ever.
American Film - Al Lavalley
The great achievement of…Pursuits of Happiness is that it finally provides a solid framework for the serious discussion of the great dialogue comedies of the thirties and forties, perhaps the most revived and loved movies of Hollywood's golden period.
London Review of Books - Geoffrey Hawthorn
This just must be, in its close readings and its stunning associations, one of the most compelling accounts of its kind. The fact is, it just is its kind.
Journal of Aesthetic Education - Gerald Mast
Stanley Cavell's book succeeds brilliantly…The individual 'readings' of the films and the general conceptual plan in which they are embedded are both so rich and rewarding that…'brilliant'…seems an understatement.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780674739062
  • Publisher: Harvard University Press
  • Publication date: 1/28/1984
  • Series: Harvard Film Studies Series , #2
  • Edition description: Reprint
  • Pages: 296
  • Sales rank: 541,184
  • Product dimensions: 5.98 (w) x 8.68 (h) x 0.81 (d)

Meet the Author

Stanley Cavell is Walter M. Cabot Professor of Aesthetics and the General Theory of Value, Emeritus, at Harvard University.
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Table of Contents

  • Introduction: Words for a Conversation
  • 1. Cons and Pros

    The Lady Eve

  • 2. Knowledge as Transgression

    It Happened One Night

  • 3. Leopards in Connecticut

    Bringing Up Baby

  • 4. The Importance of Importance

    The Philadelphia Story

  • 5. Counterfeiting Happiness

    His Girl Friday

  • 6. The Courting of Marriage

    Adam’s Rib

  • 7. The Same and Different

    The Awful Truth

  • Appendix: Film in the University
  • Acknowledgments
  • Index

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