And the Pursuit of Happiness

And the Pursuit of Happiness

Book - 2010
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With her trademark style, wit, sensitivity, and spontaneity, Maira Kalman guides a whirlwind tour of American democracy.

And the Pursuit of Happiness is beloved artist and author Maira Kalman's yearlong investigation of democracy and how it works. Energized and inspired by the 2008 elections, on inauguration day Kalman traveled to Washington, D.C., launching a national tour that would take her from a town hall meeting in Newfane, Vermont, to the inner chambers of the Supreme Court.

As we follow Kalman's wholly idiosyncratic journey, we fall in love with Lincoln alongside her as she imagines making a home for herself in the center of his magisterial memorial; ponder Alexis de Tocqueville's America; witness the inner workings of a Bronx middle-school student council; take a high-speed lesson in great American women in the National Portrait Gallery; and consider the cost of war to the brave American service families of Fort Campbell, Kentucky. The observations she makes as she travels charm and inform, and-as we have come to expect with Kalman-the route is always one of fascinating indirection.

Kalman finds evidence of democracy at work all around us. And the cast of characters we meet along the way is rousing good company, featuring visits from Benjamin Franklin, Eleanor Roosevelt, and many others. And the Pursuit of Happiness is a remarkable tribute to our history and a powerful reminder of the potential our future holds, from a true national treasure.

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Publisher: New York :, Penguin Press,, 2010.
ISBN: 9781594202674
Branch Call Number: 320.473 KA
Characteristics: 471 pages : illustrations (chiefly color) ; 24 cm


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Sep 27, 2019

A gorgeous, fun and eclectic graphic tour of significant people and places in early American history, with thoughtful commentary on democracy as well as numerous other random and charming observations. I'm surprised I hadn't encountered Kalman's work previously, as she is quite prolific. I like the insightful way she thinks, and it seems like she'd be fun to hang out with.

JCLMELODYK Jun 20, 2013

Maria Kalman is one of my favorite illustrators, known for her work for the New Yorker. Her writing is at times both humorous and endearing. You will never forget the rules of grammar once you've read The Elements of Style as illustrated by Kalman. Two thumbs up on all her work. And the Pursuit of Happiness should be read every 4th of July!

RutHut Feb 18, 2011

is the principles of uncertainty her first?


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yellow_panda_6 Jul 28, 2013

yellow_panda_6 thinks this title is suitable for 10 years and over


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