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The White Album Essays

ISBN: 9780374532079 | 0374532079
Format: Paperback
Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux
Pub. Date: 11/10/2009

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First published in 1979, The White Album records indelibly the upheavals and aftermaths of the 1960s. Examining key events, figures, and trends of the era--including Charles Manson, the Black Panthers, and the shopping mall--through the lens of her own spiritual confusion, Joan Didion helped to define mass culture as we now understand it. Written with a commanding sureness of tone and linguistic precision, The White Album is a central text of American reportage and a classic of American autobiography. Joan Didionis the author of several novels and works of nonfiction, among themSlouching Towards Bethlehem, The White Album, Miami, Salvador, After Henry,andPolitical Fictions.She lives in New York City. First published in 1979,The White Albumis a journalistic mosaicof American life in the late 1960s and throughout the 1970s. It includes, among other bizarre artifacts and personalities, reportage on the dark journeys and impulses of the Manson family, a visit to a Black Panther Party press conference, the story of John Paul Getty's museum, a meditation on the romance of water in an arid landscape, and reflections on the swirl and confusion that marked this era. With commanding sureness of mood and language, Didion exposes the realities and dreams of an age of self-discovery whose spiritual center was California. "All of the essays manifest not only [Didion's] intelligence but an instinct for details that continue to emit pulsations in the reader's memory and a style that is spare, subtly musical in its phrasing and exact. Add to these her highly vulnerable sense of herself, and the result is a voice like no other in contemporary journalism."--Robert Towers, The New York Times Book Review "Didion manages to make the sorry stuff of troubled times (bike movies, for instance, and Bishop James Pike) as interesting and suggestive as the monuments that win her dazzled admiration (Georgia O'Keeffe, the Hoover Dam, the mountains around Bogota) . . . A timely and elegant collection."--The New Yorker "Didion is an original journalistic talent who can strike at the heart, or the absurdity, of a matter in our contemporary wasteland with quick, graceful strokes."--The San Francisco Chronicle Table of Contents I. THE WHITE ALBUM The White Album II. CALIFORNIA REPUBLIC James Pike, American Holy Water Many Mansions The Getty Bureaucrats Good Citizens Notes Toward a Dreampolitik III. WOMEN The Women's Movement Doris Lessing Georgia O'Keeffe IV. SOJOURNS In the Islands In Hollywood In Bed On the Road On the Mall In Bogota At the Dam V. ON THE MORNING AFTER THE SIXTIES On the Morning After the Sixties Quiet Days in Malibu


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