Curiosities

June 26, 2014

David Foster Wallace, 1996 0

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Recommended Listening: an interview with David Foster Wallace recorded the year Infinite Jest was published. Pair with these interviews and thoughts about what we mean when we talk about “rare” recordings.

June 26, 2014

McCann: Reading, Writing and Soccer 0

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The New York Times interviewed Colum McCann about what and who he’s reading, and if you’re looking for a book recommendation this piece is full of them. For more from McCann, be sure to check out his Year in Reading, our review of his novel TransAtlantic, and this reading of his soccer poem.

June 26, 2014

“I’m Nobody! Who are you?” 1

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Recommended Reading: Alexandra Socarides writes for the Los Angeles Review of Books about uncertainty, the essay form, and what Emily Dickinson meant when she wrote about Nobodies.

June 26, 2014

On Hooliganism 0

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“Soccer inspires passions that make fans do strange things, from the horrifying to the amusing.” Just in time for today’s game, our own Bill Morris writes about the World Cup, soccer hooliganism, and Bill Buford‘s Among the Thugs. Celebrate or mourn as you will, just please don’t start throwing beer bottles…

June 26, 2014

Before “Once Upon A Time” 0

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George Dobbs explores the history of some common cliches for The Airship and makes an elegant argument for being aware of overused phrasing: “The worst fiction might never go beyond widely used tropes, but the best fiction starts with an awareness of them.” We agree, and also hope never to read “It was a dark […]

June 25, 2014

“Put your right hand on the Kindle and repeat after me.” 0

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The weird and fascinating history of books used in swearing-in ceremonies gets its latest entry: the new Ambassador to Switzerland just took the oath on her personal Kindle.

June 25, 2014

Ta-Nahisi Coates’ bibliography 0

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Earlier this month, Ta-Nahisi Coates published a conversation-changing long form article on race and reparations in The Atlantic (we covered other pundits’ responses here). Now, he is blogging a brief bibliography of the sources he consulted while writing that seminal essay. Parts one and two are available now, with two more installments planned for today and tomorrow. Whether or […]

June 25, 2014

An Autocrat’s Guide to World Cup Qualification 0

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Recommended reading: What do you get the guy you can’t get anything else–the one with his own oil-rich country–like the Emir of Qatar? The LA Review recommends starting with the World Cup.

June 25, 2014

eBooks for the brain 0

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By now we’re used to the age-old, tiresome books vs. ebooks debate: which one is cheaper, better-smelling, better for notes, better for authors, better for the Earth. But which one is better for the brain?

June 25, 2014

Saunders on Humor 0

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“Guilt and a feeling of never being satisfied with what you’ve done. And a sense that you are inadequate and a big phony. All useful for a writer. I’m always being edited by my inner nun.” An interview with the inimitable George Saunders, author of Tenth of December, on his approach to humor. Pair with: our own reviews of his stories.