"Gavin Highly", la bella storia di Janet Frame (Nuova Zelanda, 1924-2004), con una prosa dal ritmo meravigliosamente elastico. newyorker. E anche l'intervista alla nipote della scrittrice, che ne cura l'eredità letteraria e che di questo racconto dice: "To me this story is about the process of mythmaking." newyorker.


Derek Walcott, White Egrets (Faber). "... superb meditation on death, grief and the passage of time", g/o.

Nell Irvin Painter, The History of White People (Norton). "The History of White People" is perhaps the definitive story of a most curious adjective. It is a scholarly, non-polemical masterpiece of broad historical synthesis, combining political, scientific, economic and cultural history. Nell Irvin Painter è professor emerita di storia americana a Princeton. sfc.

Kike Arnal, In the Shadow of Power (Charta). 92 fotografie in bianco e nero di povertà a Washington D.C. sfc.


Mark Sarvas intervista Sam Lypsyte.
Q: Do you consider yourself, like Cass [il protagonista del romanzo], "an atheist with a soul"?
A: (Laughs ) I am not a believer, but I think religion is very complicated and fascinating. I sympathize with a lot of the impulses that get expressed in religious terms, for example the ontological wonder, suffused with a sense of gratitude for the grandeur of existence, that I show gripping Cass at odd moments of his life. Like Cass, I'm given to experiences of that sort, and, like Cass, I fastidiously avoid giving them religious expression, drawing any conclusions from them concerning the nature of reality. So I guess that makes me an atheist with a soul. Rebecca Newberger Goldstein, autrice di 36 Arguments For the Existence of God. A Work of Fiction (Pantheon), un romanzo su Dio e la matematica, il quotidiano e il cosmologico. haaretz.


"The intrusion into the classroom, which is a familiar nightmare sort of possibility for students, which I feel even now that I am, in fact, not a student but a professor (!); the mysterious journey to the morgue; the "viewing"; the inability of the girl to I.D. her mother, though everyone knows the deceased is her mother. . . . This was the story I wanted to write..." Joyce Carol Oates parla del suo racconto "I.D.", uscito questa settimana sul New Yorker . Vale decisamente la pena leggerlo, come anche la sua intervista, bookbench.


King's College Cambridge ha acquistato - e mette a disposizione del pubblico - un archivio costituito da documenti e lettere appartenenti al gruppo di Bloomsbury e in cui si parla anche del suicidio di Virginia Woolf. g/o.

YES e NO nel linguaggio politico e pop attuale. n.b. “the nattering nabobs of negativism”, da un discorso del 1970 di Spiro Agnew, vicepresidente di Nixon. nytmag.

Shawn Marie Edgington, Read Between the Lines: A Humorous Guide to Texting with Simplicity and Style (Brown Books Publishing Group), sul texting. sfc.


Emma Bernstein e Nona Willis Aronowitz, Girldrive: Criss-Crossing America, Redefining Feminism (Seal Press). In viaggio per gli Stati Uniti per chiedere alle donne che cosa significhi oggi essere femminista.

Nicholas Wade, The Faith Instinct: How Religion Evolved and Why It Endures (Penguin). Su come evolve la religione. bg.

My First New York: Early Adventures in the Big City (Ecco/HarperCollins). Trenta vip raccontano la loro prima impressione di nyc. Nora Ephron, "I’d spent those sixteen years imagining what New York was going to be like. I thought it was going to be the most exciting, magical, fraught-with-possibility place that you could ever live in; a place where if you really wanted something, you might be able to get it; a place where I’d be surrounded by people I was dying to be with. And I turned out to be right. nymag.

Tony Judt
e Kristina Božić, "The Way Things Are and How They Might Be".

Il racconto di Yan Lianke, "England and My Clan". g/o.

Edmund White su John Cheever, nybooks.


Jules Feiffer, Backing Into Forward (Nan A. Talese/Doubleday). Feiffer racconta la sua vita di bambino del Bronx, timido e pauroso, che "sidestepped arguments, fled confrontations, pedaled away from fistfights", giovane di sinistra a Manhattan negli anni Quaranta, nevrotico tra i nevrotici newyorkesi dagli anni Cinquanta in poi. nyt.


(quello che i tuoi libri dicono di te)

Eccomi. La mia biblioteca è stata analizzata da Macy Halford del New Yorker. Se volete anche voi il suo responso sulla vostra biblioteca mandatele una vostra foto! newyorker.


"The Pura Principle", il bellissimo racconto di Junot Diaz sul
New Yorker .

E l'intervista a Diaz, "Stories are hard. I have friends who knock out stories on a weekly or monthly basis, like they're running on medicinal-strength Updike. But for me a story is as daunting a prospect as a novel. As for my approach to writing, with the passing of time I need to steep longer and longer in my characters before they make any sense to me, before I can even begin to write about them. Which is a bad sign. I already write so damn slow. I guess I need to be possessed by my characters wholly, utterly, before I can put a word down..." bookbench.


Diane Ravitch, The Death and Life of the Great American School System (Basic Books). Qual è la ricetta giusta per la scuola?

L'intervista a Spike Lee sul suo nuovo documentario su New Orleans,

Perché soffriamo il solletico? slate.


Cinque anni fa Lawrence H. Summers, il presidente di Harvard aveva scandalizzato il mondo accademico e non, dicendo che le donne erano costituzionalmente meno brave in matematica. Ora, sotto la presidenza di Drew Gilpin Faust, la prima donna presidente di Harvard, le cose sono cambiate. "Universitywide, slightly more than a quarter of Harvard faculty members are women, an all-time high, with the senior faculty accounting for most of the increase. Women also lead the engineering school, the law school, the education school, Harvard College and the Radcliffe Institute. And while Harvard extended 4 of its 32 tenure offers to women in the year before Dr. Summers’s speech, last year, tenure offers went to 16 women and 25 men."

Magnum in Motion è una biblioteca online che presenta in video le foto migliori dell'archivio di Magnum Photo, organizzate tematicamente. inmotion.magnumphotos.


James Wood che critica Barthes per criticare David Shields - Reality Hunger: A Manifesto (Knopf), il libro di cui si parla di più ora in America - per criticare il nuovo romanzo di Chang-Rae Lee, The Surrendered (Riverhead).

Charles Addams's New York al Museum of the City of New York.


"The triumphant conclusion of Avatar, by contrast [con il mondo di Oz], takes the form of a permanent abandonment of the gray world of Homo sapiens—which, as Dorothy learns, may contain its own hidden marvels—for the Technicolor, over-the-rainbow fantasy world into which Jake accidentally strayed... The message of what is now James Cameron's most popular movie thus far ... is by contrast, that "reality" is dispensable altogether; or, at the very least, whatever you care to make of it, provided you have the right gadgets. In this fantasy of a lusciously colorful trip over the rainbow, you don't have to wake up. There's no need for home. Whatever its futuristic setting, and whatever its debt to the past, Avatar is very much a movie for our time." Daniel Mendelsohn, nybooks.

The Harry Ransom Center, a humanities research library and museum at The University of Texas at Austin, has acquired the archive of writer David Foster Wallace (1962-2008).


Hanif Kureishi, Collected Stories (Faber). Raccolta dei racconti dal 1997 ad ora. g/o.

Kazuo Ishiguro, Nocturnes: Five Stories of Music and Nightfall (Faber). Ishiguro debutta nel genere short story.

Jodi Picoult, House Rules (Atria). Il nuovo romanzo di Picoult ha un ragazzo autistico come protagonista.

Marilyn Johnson, This Book Is Overdue. How Librarians and Cybrarians Can Save Us All (Harper). Non sottovalutiamo i bibliotecari.

Walmart o Whole Food? Corby Kummer spiega come Walmart, la catena di supermercati supereconomici americana, sia passato al biologico.

Watching Shrek in Tehran, quel che si vede e non si vede al cinema in Iran.

L'intervista a Charlyne Yi, simpatica comica e molto altro.

Colm Tóibín su due scrittori libanesi immigrati in America, Rabih Alameddine e Rawi Hage.

cybrarian: A cybrarian is a library and information science professional that specializes in using the Internet as a resource tool.

Christopher Hitchens e la sua edizione rivista e corretta dei 10 comandamenti:


E' morto Barry Hannah "... an artist who pursued a searing, uncompromising kind of writing in a deeply middle-class and Southern way, waiting at the keyboard, the fishing hole, the diner — through many years with a bottle and maybe a firearm hidden under the driver’s seat — for what he called his “lucky” bolts of inspiration to strike." Randy Kennedy lo ricorda sul

Cathleen Schine, "Austenolatry", sulla mostra su Jane Austen, "A Woman’s Wit: Jane Austen’s Life and Legacy" alla Morgan Library di New York.

Proust Questionnaire, Martin Scorsese, "Which words or phrases do you most overuse? I use the word “wonderful” too much. I picked this up from cinematographer Michael Chapman. During Taxi Driver, checking a shot, I asked him, “Do you think that’s O.K., with such and such?” He answered, “Oh, that’s wonderful, don’t touch it.” And I thought the word “wonderful” was an odd way to describe a shot of the squalor of a city street. I found I enjoyed the expression “wonderful”—it’s actually a wonderful word. But I’ve used it too much since 1975 and I’m trying to cut back." Meraviglioso, no? vanityfair

The Rumpus intervista Sam Lipsyte sul suo ultimo libro, The Ask (FS&G).


Gli autori di Logicomix hanno scritto un graphic novel su Lévi-Strauss e lo strutturalismo. ft.

Perché Dave Eggers è odiato? "Dave Eggers is a thorn in many a side in today’s America, my own included. His bizarre combination of fame, enthusiasm and sentimentalizing drives a lot of people up a tree. It’s safe to say that Eggers is currently the most detested man in American haute-literary circles." Maria Bustillos, theawl.

Quanto costa veramente un e-book? nyt.

Frontline, i documentari/inchiesta della PBS (Public Broadcastin Service) ora si possono vedere online. pbs.

snowy new york