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All Art Is Propaganda: Critical Essays

by George Orwell George Packer Keith Gessen

As a critic, George Orwell cast a wide net. Equally at home discussing Charles Dickens and Charlie Chaplin, he moved back and forth across the porous borders between essay and journalism, high art and low. A frequent commentator on literature, language, film, and drama throughout his career, Orwell turned increasingly to the critical essay in the 1940s, when his most important experiences were behind him and some of his most incisive writing lay ahead. All Art Is Propaganda follows Orwell as he demonstrates in piece after piece how intent analysis of a work or body of work gives rise to trenchant aesthetic and philosophical commentary. With masterpieces such as "Politics and the English Language" and "Rudyard Kipling" and gems such as "Good Bad Books," here is an unrivaled education in, as George Packer puts it, "how to be interesting, line after line."

All the Sad Young Literary Men

by Keith Gessen

A charming yet scathing portrait of young adulthood at the opening of the twenty-first century, All the Sad Young Literary Men charts the lives of Sam, Mark, and Keith, as they overthink their college years, underthink their love lives, and struggle through the encouragement of the women who love and despise them to find a semblance of maturity, responsibility, and even literary fame. Heartbroken in his university town, Mark tries to focus his attention on his graduate work concerning Russian revolt, only to be lured again and again to the free pornography on the library computers. Sam binds himself to the task of crafting the first great Zionist epic even though he speaks no Hebrew, has never visited Israel, and is not a practicing Jew. Keith, thwarted by inherited notions of greatness and memories of his broken family, finds solace in the arms of the selfless woman who most reminds him of his past. At every turn, at each character s misstep, All the Sad Young Literary Men radiates with comedic warmth and biting honesty and signals the arrival of a brave and trenchant new writer.

Diary of a Very Bad Year: Confessions of an Anonymous Hedge Fund Manager

by Keith Gessen

The First Book from n+1-an Essential Chronicle of Our Financial Crisis HFM: Where are you going to buy protection on the U.S. government's credit? I mean, if the U.S. defaults, what bank is going to be able to make good on that contract? Who are you going to buy that contract from, the Martians? n+1: When does this begin to feel like less of a cyclical thing, like the weather, and more of a permanent, end-of-the-world kind of thing? HFM: When you see me selling apples out on the street, that's when you should go stock up on guns and ammunition.

Lucky Jim

by Kingsley Amis Keith Gessen

Regarded by many as the finest, and funniest, comic novel of the twentieth century, Lucky Jim remains as trenchant, withering, and eloquently misanthropic as when it first scandalized readers in 1954. This is the story of Jim Dixon, a hapless lecturer in medieval history at a provincial university who knows better than most that "there was no end to the ways in which nice things are nicer than nasty ones." Amis's scabrous debut leads the reader through a gallery of emphatically English bores, cranks, frauds, and neurotics, with each of whom Dixon must contend in one way or another in order to hold on to his cushy academic perch and win the girl of his fancy. More than just a merciless satire of cloistered college life and stuffy post-war manners, Lucky Jim is an attack on the forces of boredom, whatever form they may take, and a work of art that at once distills and extends an entire tradition of English comic writing, from Fielding and Dickens through Wodehouse and Waugh. As Christopher Hitchens has written, "if you can picture Bertie or Jeeves being capable of actual malice, and simultaneously imagine Evelyn Waugh forgetting about original sin, you have the combination of innocence and experience that makes this short romp so imperishable."

Occupy!

by Keith Gessen Mark Greif Sarah Leonard Sarah Resnick Carla Blumenkranz

In the fall of 2011, a small protest camp in downtown Manhattan exploded into a global uprising, sparked in part by the violent overreactions of the police. An unofficial record of this movement, Occupy! combines adrenalin-fueled first-hand accounts of the early days and weeks of Occupy Wall Street with contentious debates and thoughtful reflections, featuring the editors and writers of the celebrated n+1, as well as some of the world's leading radical thinkers, such as Slavoj i ek, Angela Davis, and Rebecca Solnit.The book conveys the intense excitement of those present at the birth of a counterculture, while providing the movement with a serious platform for debating goals, demands, and tactics. Articles address the history of the "horizontalist" structure at OWS; how to keep a live-in going when there is a giant mountain of laundry building up; how very rich the very rich have become; the messages and meaning of the "We are the 99%" tumblr website; occupations in Oakland, Boston, Atlanta, and elsewhere; what happens next; and much more.

Voices from Chernobyl: The Oral History of a Nuclear Disaster

by Keith Gessen Svetlana Alexievich

On April 26, 1986, the worst nuclear reactor accident in history occurred in Chernobyl and contaminated as much as three quarters of Europe. Although the Soviet government claims that only 31 people died as a result, the aftermath of the event is astounding. Over 485 villages are lost, and approximately 2.1 million people (including 700,000 children) live on contaminated land. There is no official record of how many thousands have died, but thousands of children have been born with catastrophic birth defects. Countless others suffer ongoing health problems resulting from their exposure to radiation.

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