The Odd Woman and the City

Author: Vivian Gornick

Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux

ISBN: 9780374536152

Category: Biography & Autobiography

Page: 192

View: 2589


A memoir of self-discovery and the dilemma of connection in our time, The Odd Woman and the City explores the rhythms, chance encounters, and ever-changing friendships of urban life that forge the sensibility of a fiercely independent woman who has lived out her conflicts, not her fantasies, in a city (New York) that has done the same. Running steadily through the book is Vivian Gornick's exchange of more than twenty years with Leonard, a gay man who is sophisticated about his own unhappiness, whose friendship has "shed more light on the mysterious nature of ordinary human relations than has any other intimacy" she has known. The exchange between Gornick and Leonard acts as a Greek chorus to the main action of the narrator's continual engagement on the street with grocers, derelicts, and doormen; people on the bus, cross-dressers on the corner, and acquaintances by the handful. In Leonard she sees herself reflected plain; out on the street she makes sense of what she sees. Written as a narrative collage that includes meditative pieces on the making of a modern feminist, the role of the flaneur in urban literature, and the evolution of friendship over the past two centuries, The Odd Woman and the City beautifully bookends Gornick's acclaimed Fierce Attachments, in which we first encountered her rich relationship with the ultimate metropolis.

The Odd Woman and the City

Author: Vivian Gornick

Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux

ISBN: 0374711682

Category: Biography & Autobiography

Page: 192

View: 1811


A contentious, deeply moving ode to friendship, love, and urban life in the spirit of Fierce Attachments A memoir of self-discovery and the dilemma of connection in our time, The Odd Woman and the City explores the rhythms, chance encounters, and ever-changing friendships of urban life that forge the sensibility of a fiercely independent woman who has lived out her conflicts, not her fantasies, in a city (New York) that has done the same. Running steadily through the book is Vivian Gornick's exchange of more than twenty years with Leonard, a gay man who is sophisticated about his own unhappiness, whose friendship has "shed more light on the mysterious nature of ordinary human relations than has any other intimacy" she has known. The exchange between Gornick and Leonard acts as a Greek chorus to the main action of the narrator's continual engagement on the street with grocers, derelicts, and doormen; people on the bus, cross-dressers on the corner, and acquaintances by the handful. In Leonard she sees herself reflected plain; out on the street she makes sense of what she sees. Written as a narrative collage that includes meditative pieces on the making of a modern feminist, the role of the flaneur in urban literature, and the evolution of friendship over the past two centuries, The Odd Woman and the City beautifully bookends Gornick's acclaimed Fierce Attachments, in which we first encountered her rich relationship with the ultimate metropolis.

Taking A Long Look

Author: Vivian Gornick

Publisher: Verso Books

ISBN: 1788739779

Category: Social Science

Page: 304

View: 2243


One of our most vital and incisive writers on literature, feminism, and knowing one's self For nearly fifty years, Vivian Gornick's essays, written with her characteristic clarity of perception and vibrant prose, have explored feminism and writing, literature and culture, politics and personal experience. Drawing writing from the course of her career, Taking a Long Look illuminates one of the driving themes behind Gornick's work: that the painful process of understanding one's self is what binds us to the larger world. In these essays, Gornick explores the lives and literature of Alfred Kazin, Mary McCarthy, Diana Trilling, Philip Roth, Joan Didion, and Herman Melville; the cultural impact of Silent Spring and Uncle Tom's Cabin; and the characters you might only find in a New York barber shop or midtown bus terminal. Even more, Taking a Long Look brings back into print her incendiary essays, first published in the Village Voice, championing the emergence of the women's liberation movement of the 1970s. Alternately crackling with urgency or lucid with insight, the essays in Taking a Long Look demonstrate one of America's most beloved critics at her best.

George Gissing, the Working Woman, and Urban Culture

Author: Emma Liggins

Publisher: Routledge

ISBN: 1351933981

Category: Literary Criticism

Page: 226

View: 2285


George Gissing's work reflects his observations of fin-de-siècle London life. Influenced by the French naturalist school, his realist representations of urban culture testify to the significance of the city for the development of new class and gender identities, particularly for women. Liggins's study, which considers standard texts such as The Odd Women, New Grub Street, and The Nether World as well as lesser known short works, examines Gissing's fiction in relation to the formation of these new identities, focusing specifically on debates about the working woman. From the 1880s onward, a new genre of urban fiction increasingly focused on work as a key aspect of the modern woman's identity, elements of which were developed in the New Woman fiction of the 1890s. Showing his fascination with the working woman and her narrative potential, Gissing portrays women from a wide variety of occupations, ranging from factory girls, actresses, prostitutes, and shop girls to writers, teachers, clerks, and musicians. Liggins argues that by placing the working woman at the center of his narratives, rather than at the margins, Gissing made an important contribution to the development of urban fiction, which increasingly reflected current debates about women's presence in the city.

Unfinished Business

Author: Vivian Gornick

Publisher: Black Inc.

ISBN: 1743821263

Category: Literary Criticism

Page: 192

View: 2022


I sometimes think I was born reading ... I can't remember the time when I didn't have a book in my hands, my head lost to the world around me. A celebration of passionate reading from the acclaimed author and critic In nine stunning essays, the inimitable Vivian Gornick returns to the books that have shaped her. From a reporter in 1970s New York, to a feminist negotiating love and independence, to a writer in the jubilant sanctity of older age: Gornick’s life is compelling, and in the characters of literature she finds versions of herself through the years, each time she opens the page. Gornick finds solace in the contradictory figures of D.H. Lawrence’s Sons and Lovers, assesses womanhood in Colette, and reflects on Marguerite Duras’s The Lover; she revisits Great War novels by J.L. Carr and Pat Barker, uncovers the psychological complexity in Elizabeth Bowen, and soaks in Natalia Ginzberg, ‘whose work ... made me love life more’. When two erratic, highly strung cats enter her life, she discovers Doris Lessing’s Particularly Cats. Infused with Gornick’s trademark verve and insight, this collection is a masterful appreciation of literature and its ability to illuminate. ‘Literature knows few champions as ardent or insightful — or as uncompromising — which is to readers’ good fortune.’ —Kirkus

Approaching Eye Level

Author: Vivian Gornick

Publisher: N.A

ISBN: 9781911547648

Category:

Page: 176

View: 1173


Seven seminal essays addressing loneliness, friendship and feminism, written in Gornick's inimitable voice, this collection has never been published in Australia.

The New Woman

Author: Sally Ledger,Senior Lecturer in English Sally Ledger

Publisher: Manchester University Press

ISBN: 9780719040931

Category: Literary Criticism

Page: 216

View: 9812


By comparing fictional representations with "real" New Women in late-Victorian Britain, Sally Ledger makes a major contribution to an understanding of the "Woman Question" at the end of the century. Chapters on imperialism, socialism, sexual decadence, and metropolitan life situate the "revolting daughters" of the Victorian age in a broader cultural context than previous studies.

Streetwalking the Metropolis : Women, the City and Modernity

Author: Deborah L. Parsons

Publisher: OUP Oxford

ISBN: 019158410X

Category: Cities and towns in literature

Page: 256

View: 8405


Can there be a flaneuse, and what form might she take? This is the central question of Streetwalking the Metropolis, an important contribution to ongoing debates on the city and modernity in which Deborah Parsons re-draws the gendered map of urban modernism. Assessing the cultural and literary history of the concept of the flaneur, the urban observer/writer traditionally gendered as masculine, the author advances critical space for the discussion of a female 'flaneuse', focused around a range of women writers from the 1880's to World War Two. Cutting across period boundaries, this wide-ranging study offers stimulating accounts of works by writers including Amy Levy, Dorothy Richardson, Virginia Woolf, Rosamund Lehmann, Jean Rhys, Janet Flanner, Djuna Barnes, Anais Nin, Elizabeth Bowen and Doris Lessing, highlighting women's changing relationship with the social and psychic spaces of the city, and drawing attention to the ways in which the perceptions and experiences of the street are translated into the dynamics of literary texts.

The Romance of American Communism

Author: Vivian Gornick

Publisher: Verso Books

ISBN: 1788735501

Category: Biography & Autobiography

Page: 288

View: 7977


Writer and critic Vivian Gornick’s long-unavailable classic exploring how Left politics gave depth and meaning to American life “Before I knew that I was Jewish or a girl I knew that I was a member of the working class.” So begins Vivian Gornick’s exploration of how the world of socialists, communists, and progressives in the 1940s and 1950s created a rich, diverse world where ordinary men and women felt their lives connected to a larger human project. Now back in print after its initial publication in 1977 and with a new introduction by the author, The Romance of American Communism is a landmark work of new journalism, profiling American Communist Party members and fellow travelers as they joined the Party, lived within its orbit, and left in disillusionment and disappointment as Stalin’s crimes became public.

New Yorkers: A City and Its People in Our Time

Author: Craig Taylor

Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company

ISBN: 0393242331

Category: History

Page: 432

View: 3805


A symphony of contemporary New York through the magnificent words of its people—from the best-selling author of Londoners. In the first twenty years of the twenty-first century, New York City has been convulsed by terrorist attack, blackout, hurricane, recession, social injustice, and pandemic. New Yorkers weaves the voices of some of the city’s best talkers into an indelible portrait of New York in our time—and a powerful hymn to the vitality and resilience of its people. Best-selling author Craig Taylor has been hailed as “a peerless journalist and a beautiful craftsman” (David Rakoff), acclaimed for the way he “fuses the mundane truth of conversation with the higher truth of art” (Michel Faber). In the wake of his celebrated book Londoners, Taylor moved to New York and spent years meeting regularly with hundreds of New Yorkers as diverse as the city itself. New Yorkers features 75 of the most remarkable of them, their fascinating true tales arranged in thematic sections that follow Taylor’s growing engagement with the city. Here are the uncelebrated people who propel New York each day—bodega cashier, hospital nurse, elevator repairman, emergency dispatcher. Here are those who wire the lights at the top of the Empire State Building, clean the windows of Rockefeller Center, and keep the subway running. Here are people whose experiences reflect the city’s fractured realities: the mother of a Latino teenager jailed at Rikers, a BLM activist in the wake of police shootings. And here are those who capture the ineffable feeling of New York, such as a balloon handler in the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade or a security guard at the Statue of Liberty. Vibrant and bursting with life, New Yorkers explores the nonstop hustle to make it; the pressures on new immigrants, people of color, and the poor; the constant battle between loving the city and wanting to leave it; and the question of who gets to be considered a "New Yorker." It captures the strength of an irrepressible city that—no matter what it goes through—dares call itself the greatest in the world.