Pankaj Mishra tells the New York Times about the time more than thirty years ago when he heard about a local library preparing to sell back issues of the New York Review of Books as waste paper. “I convinced a friend of mine who was a student to pose as a paper recycler,” Mishra reflected. “He put in a very high bid and brought a whole bunch of stuff over in a rickshaw.”
What’s it like spending time with Junot Diaz? According to New York Magazine’s Boris Kachka, it’s comparable to sitting in on an “advanced literary seminar taught by a bilingual stand-up comedian working very blue.” Diaz’s excellently-titled collection This is How You Lose Her comes out this fall, but in the meantime, you should start with this.
For the past two days, a Shakespeare flashmob has been interrupting meals and surprising Londoners with impromptu song-and-dance routines. The group, led by actor Mark Rylance, includes about fifty non-professional actors between the ages of seventeen and seventy, and is intended to bring the inclusive spirit of the bard back to the people. "Theatre shouldn't really be—and it tends to be too much – white, middle-class Oxbridge types speaking in posh voices," remarked director Jonathan Moore of the project, which will run for a week throughout London.
In an impassioned essay on the New Yorker’s Page Turner blog, Daniel Mendelsohn explains why growing up, all he wanted to be was a critic.