Photo credit: @julesdwit.
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Sarah McNally, owner of McNally Jackson bookstore on Prince Street, offers listeners her picks for new books this winter. What new books are you reading now?
Other Alex, glad you ordered that book online (though from where?). BTW, there are several kinds of incarnation of the Man in this case, and you can bet that compensatory Plans B and C kicked in when that particular NYT review appeared. The point is not that WNYC's "Mans" don't contradict each others' agendas fairly often, but that the station is in bed with them, either together or in turn. I'm unlucky enough to have some "inside" knowledge of how the publishing machine works. So you're right -- I wouldn't need to wonder. Cheers, Alex
Phew, other Alex. I'm sure you're right, except that I like the sort of books that Sarah McNally talks about. OTOH, the Rand McNally connection mkes me feel slightly less guilty about online-ordering the Tony Judt book. (Which got a crummy review in the NYT, btw, so you might wonder about WNYC being in bed with the Man, but you probably wouldn't...)
Wow. What Alex said.
WNYC's idea of "literature" worth talking about often bothers me, but the idea of trying to articulate the issues involved exhausts me. So thanks for taking a stab at this.
I find it telling that, except for Alex's lament, the previous posts on this segment are essentially promotional in nature.
WnYC publishing complaint
WNYC continues to pander to the lowest common denominator of "taste" in literature. Sarah McNally's qualifications for serving as a "Reader's Guide" to literature of any kind consist of being the child of wealthy parents who started the Rand McNally bookstore in another city. This is absolutely shameful. WNYC, even if you find it necessary to continue pretending that modernist and experimental literature do not exist, that there is no such thing as writing that is both genuinely innovative and truly literary--could you at least peddle the tastes of an actual critic or novelist. however hobbled by conventionality or capitalism your choice would inevitably be? Even if, as you have done until now, you find it necessary to pretend that we are still in the early- to mid- 19th century-- that popular, unimaginative, derivative, realistic fiction is the ONLY literary prose worth exploring--could you at least present the listenership with "guides" who have some degree of attainment even in that shamefully limited literary field? The above-noted failures, combined with your slavish adherence to the author-promotion agendas of the New York Times and the New Yorker (you are essentially an extended arm of the powerful publishing-house/media/advertising complex that passes for a supplier of "literature" these days), is really really depressing. Why, why, why? You do so well in so many other areas. This is a true shame.
I can't wait to browse the books at McNally Jackson, and thank Sarah McNally for recommending "Thinking the Twentieth Century" - new to me, although "Ill Fares the Land" and "Bloodlands" are two of my favorites. PS>Timothy Snyder is an engaging and compelling speaker, see him if you can.
I think "Leverage" about two athletes witnessing a teammate's brutal assault and coming to terms with how to deal with it is not only well written but very timely, given the Penn State scandal the and hazing incident in New Jersey.
A must-read: ISRAELA by Batya Casper. An eloquent novel about three sisters, their relationship to each other and their struggles set against the constant Palestinian/Israeli conflict. A beautiful, heartfelt story bringing a huge dose of humanity to a disturbing global situation.
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