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The Comedians

Author: Kliph Nesteroff
Publisher: Open Road + Grove/Atlantic
ISBN: 0802190863
Size: 53.29 MB
Format: PDF, Docs
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In The Comedians, comedy historian Kliph Nesteroff brings to life a century of American comedy with real-life characters, forgotten stars, mainstream heroes and counterculture iconoclasts. Based on over two hundred original interviews and extensive archival research, Nesteroff’s groundbreaking work is a narrative exploration of the way comedians have reflected, shaped, and changed American culture over the past one hundred years. Starting with the vaudeville circuit at the turn of the last century, Nesteroff introduces the first stand-up comedian—an emcee who abandoned physical shtick for straight jokes. After the repeal of Prohibition, Mafia-run supper clubs replaced speakeasies, and mobsters replaced vaudeville impresarios as the comedian’s primary employer. In the 1950s, the late-night talk show brought stand-up to a wide public, while Lenny Bruce, Mort Sahl, and Jonathan Winters attacked conformity and staged a comedy rebellion in coffeehouses. From comedy’s part in the Civil Rights movement and the social upheaval of the late 1960s, to the first comedy clubs of the 1970s and the cocaine-fueled comedy boom of the 1980s, The Comedians culminates with a new era of media-driven celebrity in the twenty-first century.

Living With Hate In American Politics And Religion

Author: Jeffrey Israel
Publisher: Columbia University Press
ISBN: 0231548753
Size: 65.48 MB
Format: PDF, ePub, Docs
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In the United States, people are deeply divided along lines of race, class, political party, gender, sexuality, and religion. Many believe that historical grievances must eventually be left behind in the interest of progress toward a more just and unified society. But too much in American history is unforgivable and cannot be forgotten. How then can we imagine a way to live together that does not expect people to let go of their entrenched resentments? Living with Hate in American Politics and Religion offers an innovative argument for the power of playfulness in popular culture to make our capacity for coexistence imaginable. Jeffrey Israel explores how people from different backgrounds can pursue justice together, even as they play with their divisive grudges, prejudices, and desires in their cultural lives. Israel calls on us to distinguish between what belongs in a raucous “domain of play” and what belongs in the domain of the political. He builds on the thought of John Rawls and Martha Nussbaum to defend the liberal tradition against challenges posed by Frantz Fanon from the left and Leo Strauss from the right. In provocative readings of Lenny Bruce’s stand-up comedy, Philip Roth’s Portnoy’s Complaint, and Norman Lear’s All in the Family, Israel argues that postwar Jewish American popular culture offers potent and fruitful examples of playing with fraught emotions. Living with Hate in American Politics and Religion is a powerful vision of what it means to live with others without forgiving or forgetting.

Richard Pryor In Hollywood

Author: Anthony Balducci
Publisher: McFarland
ISBN: 1476632790
Size: 20.37 MB
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 Hollywood studios were once eager to bring stand-up comedy king Richard Pryor’s dynamic humor to the big screen—so much so that studio executives gave him full access to available resources and creative control to develop his own projects. Unfortunately Pryor’s screen talents were far less acclaimed than his stage ones, and flops such as The Toy and Superman III greatly diminished his reputation. The author examines how this downfall unfolded through comprehensive analyses of each of Pryor’s movies.

This Is A Book About The Kids In The Hall

Author: Semley, John
Publisher: ECW Press
ISBN: 1770909206
Size: 59.50 MB
Format: PDF
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The first book to explore their history, legacy, and influence This is a book about the Kids in the Hall „ the legendary Canadian sketch comedy troupe formed in Toronto in 1984 and best known for the innovative, hilarious, zeitgeist-capturing sketch show The Kids in the Hall „ told by the people who were there, namely the Kids themselves. John SemleyÍs thoroughly researched book is rich with interviews with Dave Foley, Mark McKinney, Bruce McCulloch, Kevin McDonald, and Scott Thompson, as well as Lorne Michaels and comedians speaking to the KidsÍ legacy: Janeane Garofalo, Tim Heidecker, Nathan Fielder, and others. It also turns a criticÍs eye on that legacy, making a strong case for the massive influence the Kids have exerted, both on alternative comedy and on pop culture more broadly. The Kids in the Hall were like a band: a group of weirdoes brought together, united by a common sensibility. And, much like a band, theyÍre always better when theyÍre together. This is a book about friendship, collaboration, and comedy „ and about clashing egos, lost opportunities, and one-upmanship. This is a book about the head-crushing, cross-dressing, inimitable Kids in the Hall.