Description : Although 2002 MacArthur Fellowship recipient Colson Whitehead ardently resists overarching categorizations of his work, Derek C. Maus argues in this volume that Whitehead’s first six books are linked by a careful balance between adherence to and violation of the wisdom of past generations. Whitehead bids readers to come along with him on challenging, often open-ended literary excursions designed to reexamine accepted notions of truth. Understanding Colson Whitehead unravels the parallel structures found within Whitehead’s fiction from his 1999 novel The Intuitionist through 2011’s Zone One. In his choice of literary forms, Whitehead attempts to revitalize the limiting formulas to which they have been reduced by first imitating and then violating the conventions of those genres and sub-genres. Whitehead similarly tests subject matter, again imitating and then satirizing various forms of conventional wisdom as a means of calling out unexamined, ignored, and/or malevolent aspects of American culture. Although only one of many subjects that Whitehead addresses, race often takes a place of centrality in his works and, as such, serves as the prime example of how Whitehead asks his readers to revisit their assumptions about meanings and values. By jumbling the literary formulas of the detective novel, the heroic folktale, the coming-of-age story, and the zombie apocalypse, Whitehead reveals the flaws and shortcomings of many of the long-lasting stories through which Americans have defined themselves. Some of the stories Whitehead focuses on are explicitly literary in nature, but he more frequently directs his attention toward the historical and cultural processes that influence how race, class, gender, education, social status, and other categories of identity determine what an individual supposedly can and cannot do.
Description : From the Pulitzer-Prize winning author of The Underground Railroad: a tender, hilarious, and supremely original novel about coming-of-age in the 80s. Benji Cooper is one of the few black students at an elite prep school in Manhattan. But every summer, Benji escapes to the Hamptons, to Sag Harbor, where a small community of African American professionals have built a world of their own. The summer of ’85 won’t be without its usual trials and tribulations, of course. There will be complicated new handshakes to fumble through and state-of-the-art profanity to master. Benji will be tested by contests big and small, by his misshapen haircut (which seems to have a will of its own), by the New Coke Tragedy, and by his secret Lite FM addiction. But maybe, just maybe, this summer might be one for the ages.
Description : From Victor Halperin’s White Zombie (1932) to George A. Romero’s landmark Night of the Living Dead (1968) and AMC’s hugely successful The Walking Dead (2010–), zombie mythology has become an integral part of popular culture. In a reversal of the typical pattern of adaptation, the zombie developed onscreen before appearing in short stories and comic books during the 20th century, and more recently as subjects of more traditional novels. This collection of new essays examines some of the most influential and inventive zombie literature, from the early stories to the most recent narratives, including some told from a zombie perspective.
Description : 5 Great Stories That Grab You. Colson Whitehead charts the rise to fame of a truth-telling comedian. Stephen Oâ€™Connor transports us to a cabin in the woods, where a young woman becomes increasingly convinced sheâ€™s not alone. Lydia Davisâ€™ narrator acutely details the behavior of three cows who live in a pasture just across the road. Plus inspiring work by Pasha Malla and Marisa Silver.
Description : ENJOY THE ECSTASY OF AGONY. Amy and Jordan are just like us: hoping for the best, even when things go from bad to worse. They are menaced by bears, beheaded by ghosts, and hunted by the cops, but still they struggle on, bickering and reconciling, scraping together the rent and trying to find a decent movie. It’s the perfect solace for anxious modern minds, courtesy of one of the great innovators of American comics. Now if only Amy’s skin would grow back ... This NYRC edition features a recreation of the original, pocket-size, slipcovered, paperback, designed by Art Spiegelman and Francoise Mouly.
Description : In a dazzlingly original work of nonfiction, the Pulitzer-Prize winning author of The Underground Railroad recreates the exuberance, the chaos, the promise, and the heartbreak of New York. Here is a literary love song that will entrance anyone who has lived in—or spent time—in the greatest of American cities. A masterful evocation of the city that never sleeps, The Colossus of New York captures the city’s inner and outer landscapes in a series of vignettes, meditations, and personal memories. Colson Whitehead conveys with almost uncanny immediacy the feelings and thoughts of longtime residents and of newcomers who dream of making it their home; of those who have conquered its challenges; and of those who struggle against its cruelties. Whitehead’s style is as multilayered and multifarious as New York itself: Switching from third person, to first person, to second person, he weaves individual voices into a jazzy musical composition that perfectly reflects the way we experience the city. There is a funny, knowing riff on what it feels like to arrive in New York for the first time; a lyrical meditation on how the city is transformed by an unexpected rain shower; and a wry look at the ferocious battle that is commuting. The plaintive notes of the lonely and dispossessed resound in one passage, while another captures those magical moments when the city seems to be talking directly to you, inviting you to become one with its rhythms. The Colossus of New York is a remarkable portrait of life in the big city. Ambitious in scope, gemlike in its details, it is at once an unparalleled tribute to New York and the ideal introduction to one of the most exciting writers working today.
Description : What would happen to international politics if the dead rose from the grave and started to eat the living? Daniel Drezner's groundbreaking book answers the question that other international relations scholars have been too scared to ask. Addressing timely issues with analytical bite, Drezner looks at how well-known theories from international relations might be applied to a war with zombies. Exploring the plots of popular zombie films, songs, and books, Theories of International Politics and Zombies predicts realistic scenarios for the political stage in the face of a zombie threat and considers how valid—or how rotten—such scenarios might be. This newly revived edition includes substantial updates throughout as well as a new epilogue assessing the role of the zombie analogy in the public sphere.
Description : The Great Recession in Fiction, Film, and Television: Twenty-first-Century Bust Culture examines pop artifacts not typically included in discussions of the financial meltdown; the collected essays treat our busted culture as a seismograph that registers the traumas of collapse. In accessible, intellectually rigorous prose, each essay locates their subject – from disaster films to graphic novels – along a spectrum of ideological fantasies, social erasures, and profound anxieties inspired by the Great Recession.