further reading

the archivist May 4, 2024

Review: A Swim in a Pond in the Rain: In Which Four Russians Give a Master Class on Writing, Reading, and Life George Saunders Random House ISBN 9781984856029 PRICE $28.00 (USD) PAGES 432 George Saunders, the celebrated author of Lincoln in the Bardo and Tenth of December, invites readers on an intellectual journey with his […]

the archivist March 6, 2024

“Toasted bacon wrapped in tin trays, sonic dishwashers and fridges that appear from under the kitchen floor – this was how life was supposed to be 40 years ago. These pictures are from a 1962 book called 1975: And the Changes to Come by Arnold B. Barach. They predict what the world of the future […]

the archivist October 29, 2023

Over at Jane Austen’s World, Rachel Dodge has been comparing how Austen’s novels use what have now become standard romance tropes. The end of the series is the Sense and Sensibility’s (double) love triangle. Jane Austen’s World | Jane Austen and Rom Coms: Sense and Sensibility (“Love Triangles”) — We often forget that Thomas Alva […]

the archivist September 8, 2023

About 18 months ago (in the summer of 1996) I went to see Four Weddings and a Funeral at a North London cineplex. Very soon I was filled with a yearning to be doing something else (for example, standing at a bus stop in the rain); and under normal circumstances I would have walked out […]

the archivist May 6, 2023

Yes, volume 8 was posted before volume 7. Want your money back? The girl who grew up in Pasadena, took the bus, loved her mom, and wrote herself into the world. Vulture | The Spectacular Life of Octavia Butler — With its sweet and loving disposition, combined with silky fur and elegantly droopy ears, the Cavalier […]

the archivist December 6, 2022

Why did I write it down? In order to remember, of course, but exactly what was it I wanted to remember? How much of it actually happened? Did any of it? Why do I keep a notebook at all? It is easy to deceive oneself on all those scores. The impulse to write things down […]

the archivist November 29, 2022

She was hired by Emily Carr University in an effort to recruit Indigenous faculty. Then questions arose about her identity. The Curious Case of Gina Adams: A “Pretendian” investigation.   How did a simple offer, over a single painting, lead to such a spectacular destruction of someone’s life and career? The answer involves the shifting […]

the archivist October 15, 2022

Writing is not a sexy business. It’s not a rare butterfly that floats down and gently kisses you on the nose with a brilliant idea that conjures a hurricane of cash. It’s frustrating, and it’s lonely, and for most people, it doesn’t pay. But one genre consistently makes it work. Romance writers who are able […]

the archivist July 29, 2022

Cult Classic A Novel Sloane Crosley 306 pages Farrar, Straus and Giroux (MCD) Publication date: ‎ June 7, 2022 From the publisher: Hilariously insightful and delightfully suspenseful, Cult Classic is an original: a masterfully crafted tale of love, memory, morality, and mind control, as well as a fresh foray into the philosophy of romance. MOST […]

the archivist June 20, 2022

Two of our favorite poets around here are Edna St. Vincent Millay and E.E. Cummings, who, despite overlapping in lifespans, hail from two different generations of American poetry. In Savage Beauty, an excellent Millay biography by Nancy Milford, the author reconstructs Millay’s contributions to the 1933 Guggenheim Fellowship award process, in which she recommended up-and-coming […]

the archivist September 5, 2021

Your Brain, Explained: What Neuroscience Reveals About Your Brain and its Quirks Marc Dingman ‎Nicholas Brealey Publishing, 2019 256 pages From the publisher: Sleep. Memory. Pleasure. Fear. Language. We experience these things every day, but how do our brains create them?   Your Brain, Explained is a personal tour around your gray matter. Neuroscientist Marc Dingman […]

the archivist August 18, 2021

Wendell Berry delivered a speech at the conference, “Spirituality and Healing”, at Louisville, Kentucky, on October 17, 1994. Below is an excerpt: So far, I have been implying my beliefs at every turn. Now I had better state them openly. I take literally the statement in the Gospel of John that God loves the world. […]

the archivist May 24, 2021

Music A Subversive History by Ted Gioia Perseus Books, Basic Books 528 pages, published 2019. From the publisher: “A dauntingly ambitious, obsessively researched” (Los Angeles Times) global history of music that reveals how songs have shifted societies and sparked revolutions. Histories of music overwhelmingly suppress stories of the outsiders and rebels who created musical revolutions […]