Writing New York

Writing New York
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  • ISBN-13: 9781598530216
  • ISBN: 1598530216
  • Edition: 10
  • Publication Date: 2008
  • Publisher: Library of America, The


Lopate, Phillip


""Few cities," writes Phillip Lopate in his introduction to this historic anthology, "have inspired as much great writing as New York." Here, in a widely acclaimed volume, now updated and expanded, Lopate and The Library of America present an unprecedented literary portrait of the city as seen through the eyes of over a hundred writers, from Washington Irving, the first New York author to establish an international reputation. to such contemporary voices as Jane Jacobs, Oscar Hijuelos, Louis Auchincloss, and Colson Whitehead. Residents and tourists, novelists and poets, architects, politicians, social reformers, sports writers, naturalists, humorists - in unexpected and dazzling ways, the writers in this volume take on the challenge of capturing New York's enduring spirit, its constantly changing public spectacle, its gossip, amusements, and hard-luck stories, its tragedies and disasters." "From the beginning, writers recognized the city's unique pace and variety, at once exhilarating and overwhelming. While Edgar Allan Poe complains of "the amount of general annoyances wrought by street noises," Walt Whitman strolls on Broadway to savor "the glories strung like beads on my smallest sights and bearings." Among the many moments from the city's formative years, the diarist George Templeton Strong gives a firsthand account of the Draft Riots, Frederick Law Olmsted tells the inside story of the making of Central Park, and Fanny Fern investigates the hard life of New York's working women. The modern city emerges in all its splendor and misery from the back alleys and opium dens to the inner precincts of Wall Street and Tammany Hall." "The 20th-century mix of voices mirrors New York's ascendancy as the world capital of modernity. Theodore Dreiser meditates on the vanished pleasures of Manhattan Beach and William Carlos Williams serves a medical internship in Hell's Kitchen; Kate Simon goes to the movies in the Bronx; Malcolm Cowley depicts Greenwich Village in its heyday; Edmund Wilson goes backstage at the Ziegfeld Follies and Elizabeth Hardwick encounters Billie Holiday; Zora Neale Hurston and Thomas Wolfe explore the argots of Harlem and Brooklyn; Edwin Denby remembers Willem de Kooning's search for compositional beauty in the "spots and cracks" of the pavement; Allen Ginsberg gets mugged; fellow poets Sara Teasdale, Charles Reznikoff and Frank O'Hara find touching resonance in the tiniest details of metropolitan life; and Don DeLillo describes the terror of September 11th."--BOOK JACKET.Lopate, Phillip is the author of 'Writing New York', published 2008 under ISBN 9781598530216 and ISBN 1598530216.

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