Adding to his mind-altering oeuvre, which already includes poems, a novel, and works of criticism on subjects like Andy Warhol, Jackie O, and gay men’s penchant for opera, Wayne Koestenbaum delivers a coup d’état with Hotel Theory, a palimpsest of postmodern detritus presented in two parallel texts.
Elsa Schiaparelli begins her memoir by comparing Saint Peter’s Basilica and Piazza in Rome to the claws of an enormous crab, thereby revealing the protean, anthropomorphizing imagination for which the designer was revered in 1930s Paris. Like Picasso, this short, magnetic, dark-haired Mediterranean
In the graphic novel Exit Wounds, Israeli taxi driver Koby Franco finds himself on a reluctant quest to discover the fate of his estranged father after being contacted by a young female soldier who believes the elder Franco has died in a suicide bombing. Nothing is quite as it seems in this offbeat
Photographer Danny Lyon has spent much of his career documenting the overlooked and underreported, be it an outlaw motorcycle gang (The Bikeriders ) or the nineteenth-century buildings demolished to make way for the World Trade Center (The Destruction of Lower Manhattan ). In 1967, his
Anne Fadiman is a specialist in what she stubbornly calls the familiar essay, a genre that reached its prime in the early nineteenth century. Most readers and writers today are acquainted with its cousin, the personal essay. Fadiman’s word choice, then, acts as a small protest. Personal, she notes
In Rebecca Solnit’s River of Shadows (2003), the life of Eadweard Muybridge initiates an expansive meditation on technology, the motion-picture industry, Leland Stanford, Silicon Valley, and, ultimately, the Western landscape. It is terrain that Solnit likewise seeks in her other books, among them
As its subtitle indicates, Hubbub: Filth, Noise and Stench in England, 1600–1770 is about the dirtiness, clamor, and odor of seventeenth- and eighteenthcentury urban England. It is also about dentistry, furniture, food, hygiene, houses, sewage, and hair. Framed as an investigation of “how people