From a confession of the sadness of a âStar Wars nerdâ to an investigation into the legacy of a would-be literary titan, Lethem illuminates the process by which a child invents himself as a writer, and as a human being, through a series of approaches to the culture around him. In âThe Disappointment Artist,â a letter from his aunt, a childrenâs book author, spurs a meditation on the value of writing workshops, and the uncomfortable fraternity of writers. In âDefending The Searchersâ Lethem explains how a passion for the classic John Wayne Western became occasion for a series of minor humiliations. In âIdentifying with Your Parents,â an excavation of childhood love for superhero comics expands to cover a whole range of nostalgia for a previous generationâs cultural artifacts. And â13/1977/21,â which begins by recounting the summer he saw Star Wars twenty-one times, âslipping past ushers whoâd begun to recognize me . . . occult as a porn customer,â becomes a meditation on the sorrow and solace of the solitary movie-goer.
THE DISAPPOINTMENT ARTIST confirms Lethem's unique ability to illuminate the way life, his and ours, can be read between the lines of art and culture.
About: Blending elements of reminiscence and cultural commentary, the award-winning author of Motherless Brooklyn presents a series of imaginative essays that address a wide range of cultural obsessions, in such works as 'Defending The Searchers,' 'Identifying with Your Parents,' and '13/1977/21,' about the summer he saw Star Wars twenty-one times.
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