American Studies

Front Cover
Macmillan, Nov 1, 2003 - History - 320 pages
7 Reviews
At each step of this journey through American cultural history, Louis Menand has an original point to make: he explains the real significance of William James's nervous breakdown, and of the anti-Semitism in T. S. Eliot's writing. He reveals the reasons for the remarkable commercial successes of William Shawn's New Yorker and William Paley's CBS. He uncovers the connection between Larry Flynt's Hustler and Jerry Falwell's evangelism, between the atom bomb and the Scholastic Aptitude Test. He locates the importance of Richard Wright, Norman Mailer, Pauline Kael, Christopher Lasch, and Rolling Stone magazine. And he lends an ear to Al Gore in the White House as the Starr Report is finally presented to the public.

Like his critically acclaimed bestseller, The Metaphysical Club, American Studies is intellectual and cultural history at its best: game and detached, with a strong curiosity about the political underpinnings of ideas and about the reasons successful ideas insinuate themselves into the culture at large. From one of our leading thinkers and critics, known both for his "sly wit and reportorial high-jinks [and] clarity and rigor" (The Nation), these essays are incisive, surprising, and impossible to put down.
  

What people are saying - Write a review

User ratings

5 stars
2
4 stars
2
3 stars
3
2 stars
0
1 star
0

Review: American Studies

User Review  - haetmonger - Goodreads

"[Pauline] Kael never gave anyone credit for good intentions. “Art,” as she put it back in 1956, “perhaps unfortunately, is not the sphere of good intentions.” She wasn't interested in abstractions ... Read full review

Review: American Studies

User Review  - sunspot - Goodreads

Excellent. One of America's best writers. Read full review

Contents

II
3
III
31
IV
54
V
76
VI
91
VII
112
VIII
125
IX
146
XI
180
XII
198
XIII
221
XIV
239
XV
244
XVI
265
XVII
285
Copyright

X
162

Common terms and phrases

References to this book

All Book Search results »

About the author (2003)

Louis Menand is the Pulitzer Prize-winning author of The Metaphysical Club and Distinguished Professor of English at the Graduate Center of the City University of New York and a staff writer at The New Yorker.

Bibliographic information