In the Web: Oct14

zsmith_1-102314_580-0> > Zadie Smith sulla vita a Manhattan: Find Your Beach, «The New York Review of Books».

Across the way from our apartment—on Houston, I guess—there’s a new wall ad. The site is forty feet high, twenty feet wide. It changes once or twice a year. Whatever’s on that wall is my view: I look at it more than the sky or the new World Trade Center, more than the water towers, the passing cabs. It has a subliminal effect. Last semester it was a spot for high-end vodka, and while I wrangled children into their snowsuits, chock-full of domestic resentment, I’d find myself dreaming of cold martinis…

 

1010dt0315johnberryman01> > Alexander Nazaryan su John Berryman: Remembering John Berryman, a Giant of American Poetry, «Newsweek».

The reissue of a writer’s work on the anniversary of his or her birth or death is nothing more than a ploy. Sometimes, the ploy is odious. Here, it is necessary. Berryman has not been forgotten, but his gnomic revelations have less force than they used to. The British critic Al Alvarez once noted that Berryman had “a gift for grief.” It was a gift that could morph into mordant humor, melancholy insight, unexpected piety or (at its least compelling) stifling self-pity. In the end, it was a gift on the order of the Trojan Horse…

 
coltrane_jpg_780x638_q85> > Geoff Dyer su John Coltrane: Catastrophic Coltrane, «The New York Review of Books».

Offering: Live at Temple University offers further evidence of the catastrophe of the last phase of John Coltrane’s work. “Last” rather than “late” because he became ill and died too suddenly (on July 17, 1967), too early, to have properly entered a late period. He was forty. In any other field of activity that would be a desperately short life. Only in jazz could it be considered broadly in line with actuarial norms…

 

 
f608b449-52be-45ba-9acb-157c1c25de2a-2060x1236 > > Pankaj Mishra sul modello di vita occidentale: The western model is broken, «The Guardian».

“So far, the 21st century has been a rotten one for the western model,” according to a new book, The Fourth Revolution, by John Micklethwait and Adrian Wooldridge. This seems an extraordinary admission from two editors of the Economist, the flag-bearer of English liberalism, which has long insisted that the non-west could only achieve prosperity and stability through western prescriptions…

 

 
917_05_0510010480> > John Jeremiah Sullivan sull’origine del saggio come genere letterario: THE ILL-DEFINED PLOT, «The New Yorker».

It is a curious fact that the word essayist showed up in English before it existed in French. We said it first, for some reason, by not just years but a couple of centuries. France could invent the modern essay, but the notion that someone might seize on the production of these fugitive-seeming pieces as a defining mode was too far-fetched to bear naming…

 

Walcott_Phillips_640x360-202x113> > Dagli archivi della 92Y di New York: 75 at 75: Writers on Recordings.

A special project for this anniversary season, “75 at 75” invites authors to listen to a recording from our vast archive and write a personal response. In most instances, these recordings are being made available to the general public for the very first time. Colm Tóibín on Elizabeth Bishop, Brian Boyd on Vladimir Nabokov, Rick Moody on W. G. Sebald, A. L. Kennedy on E. E. Cummings, Caryl Phillips on Derek Walcott, Cynthia Ozick on W. H. Auden, Tom Stoppard on Harold Pinter—these are just some of the exciting pairs of recording-responses coming to Poetry Center Online in the next year.

 
KINNELL-RFR-master675_580-0> > C.K. Williams ricorda Galway Kinnell: Postscript: Galway Kinnell (1927-2014), «The New Yorker».

About the death of any friend one feels sadness; with some, though, that sadness is tempered by gratitude, by a feeling of privilege to have been able to live in the world at the same time as the one who’s gone. I knew Galway Kinnell for almost half a century, we were friends for a good part of that time, and that feeling of being fortunate to know him, to be able to be with him, never diminished…

babel_cat_small