What Goes Without Seeing: Marriage, Sex and the Ordinary in The Awful Truth

Film-Philosophy 18 (1):92-109 (2014)
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This paper offers a reading of The Awful Truth in order to meditate further on Stanley Cavell's articulation of the themes of the ordinary and perfectionist marriage as exemplified in the genre of films he calls the Hollywood Comedy of Remarriage in Cavell and . I explore different ways in which this film and the medium of film generally are capable of making the unseen visible: revealing the ordinary that is hidden behind its very familiarity; making available an awareness that we are unseen by the projected reality of film; and, in this film in particular, showing that this divorcing couple - whose marriage and sexual life are essentially off-screen - are as if married all along even while they pursue other love interests



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David Macarthur
University of Sydney

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References found in this work

Philosophical investigations.Ludwig Wittgenstein & G. E. M. Anscombe - 1953 - Revue Philosophique de la France Et de l'Etranger 161:124-124.
Must we mean what we say?Stanley Cavell - 1964 - In Vere Claiborne Chappell (ed.), Ordinary language: essays in philosophical method. New York: Dover Publications. pp. 172 – 212.
Culture and Value.Ludwig Wittgenstein, G. H. Von Wright, Heikki Nymam & Peter Winch - 1982 - Philosophy and Rhetoric 15 (1):70-73.
Emerson’s Transcendental Etudes.Stanley Cavell - 2003 - Stanford University Press.

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