Charles (Samuel) Addams DWIGHT MacDONALD - Essay

DWIGHT MacDONALD

(Contemporary Literary Criticism)

There must be a special reason why Americans find Addams's stuff refreshing. Perhaps it is because the cartoons, which deal largely with family life, provide a healthy antidote to the saccharine treatment of the same subject in our advertisements and other forms of mass culture. After the depressingly cheerful families of the beer ads, the pious celebrations of marital bliss on the radio, the sentimental gushing over the kiddies everywhere except in the home, it is wonderfully relaxing to see these themes treated with a reverse twist, a bend sinister. Addams works this profitable vein with great diligence.

He also, of course, exploits the American public's peculiar, and in some ways rather...

(The entire section is 1071 words.)