I think the rating system, such as it is, is pretty self-explanatory. 52. Priestdaddy – Patricia Lockwood (!!!!) 51. A Separation – Katie Kitamura (!!!) 50. Some Trees – John Ashbery (!) 49. Dear Friend, from My Life I Write to You in Your Life – Yiyun Li (!) 48. The Handmaid’s Tale – Margaret Atwood (!!!) 47. The Selfishness of Others:… Continue reading What I Read in 2017
“Terrible as he thought the whole business was, and repelled as he was by mindlessness in love, he could not keep the deep wave of sorrow from engulfing him as he looked at this really rather pretty woman sitting straight as a pole, holding her breasts, and staring in front of her out of hollow… Continue reading Relationship Advice from Toni Morrison
For those of us who have not suffered a life-changing loss, reading these books can be shocking. I think of, for instance, when I first read Roland Barthes’s almost unbearable Mourning Diary, about the death of his mother. Barthes was a true mama’s boy, having lived with his mother for virtually all his adult life,… Continue reading “Culture is in its most intimate intent a heroic denial of creatureliness.”
‘Tis in ourselves that we are thus or thus. Our bodies are our gardens, to the which our wills are gardeners: so that if we will plant nettles or sow lettuce, set hyssop and weed up thyme, supply it with one gender of herbs or distract it with many, either to have it sterile with… Continue reading “Virtue? A fig!
Taking a cue from this post and several others that have been popping up on Twitter today . . . The Tempest, William Shakespeare Gilead, Marilynne Robinson Ulysses, James Joyce Why Be Happy When You Could Be Normal?, Jeannette Winterson Giovanni’s Room, James Baldwin Station Eleven, Emily St. John Mandel Zone, Mathias Énard The Iliad,… Continue reading A Personal Canon
To paraphrase early Wilco, we get to be people who find the time to write our minds the way we want them to read, people who want to be true. Should we accept the mission of becoming philosophers, we will be individuals who want to know what is true more than we want to feel… Continue reading “Critical thinking, we call it.”