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The “dazzling” and essential portrayal of 1960s America from the author of South and West and The Year of Magical Thinking (The New York Times). Capturing the tumultuous landscape of the United States, and in particular California, during a pivotal era of social change, the first work of nonfiction from one of American literature’s most distinctive prose stylists is a modern classic. In twenty razor-sharp essays that redefined the art of journalism, National Book Award–winning author Joan Didion reports on a society gripped by a deep generational divide, from the “misplaced children” dropping acid in San Francisco’s Haight-Ashbury district to Hollywood legend John Wayne filming his first picture after a bout with cancer. She paints indelible portraits of reclusive billionaire Howard Hughes and folk singer Joan Baez, “a personality before she was entirely a person,” and takes readers on eye-opening journeys to Death Valley, Hawaii, and Las Vegas, “the most extreme and allegorical of American settlements.” First published in 1968, Slouching Towards Bethlehem has been heralded by the New York Times Book Review as “a rare display of some of the best prose written today in this country” and named to Time magazine’s list of the one hundred best and most influential nonfiction books. It is the definitive account of a terrifying and transformative decade in American history whose discordant reverberations continue to sound a half-century later.
This collection of essays takes the reader on a psychological tour of the intense, wayward, violent, not a little crazy America of the 1960s. Surfers, students, deadheads and druggies; Joan Baez, Dean Martin, Howard Hughes and John Wayne - all emerge from Didion's gaze just that little bit weirder, that little bit more American. Joan Didion has also written Sentimental Journeys and The White Album.
Filled with clinical vignettes that bring her writings to life, the book cognently addresses such disparate topics as diagnosis, the superego, and silence, as well as the important of spirituality. The title essay, which opens the book, is justly famous–a close analysis of an apparently hopeless, elderly patient, Coltart's dramatic intervention, and the remarkable resluts of the case.
On Monday, 8:15 a.m., August 6, 1945, the world changed forever. In the single largest act of destruction ever initiated by humans, a bomb with the equivalent force of 20,000 tons of TNT shattered Hiroshima, killing tens of thousands of civilians, people who had become used to the American war planes flying overhead, planes that were purposely not dropping bombs on their city, to the point where the rush to the bomb shelters had become lackadaisical, and the normal activities continued with little interruption – getting the children up and off to school, opening the many small retail stores for the daily customers, perhaps stopping at a local café for morning coffee or tea, perhaps joining in on the group exercise classes. This is the precise instant we entered the postmodern world, one where the easy truths of centuries no longer applied. Speculative Fiction projects real possibilities beyond the now shattered assumptions, moving through marginalized fictional landscapes – science fiction, fantasy, horror, weird fiction, supernatural fiction, superhero comics, graphic novels, and movies, utopian and dystopian fiction, apocalyptic and post-apocalyptic fiction, Cyber Punk, the New Wave, as well as related static, motion, and virtual arts, including everything from graphic novels to video games.
Three essential works that redefined the art of journalism by “one of our sharpest and most trustworthy cultural observers” (The New York Times). In these masterpieces of razor-sharp reportage, the National Book Award–winning and New York Times–bestselling author proves herself one of the premier essayists of the twentieth century, “an articulate witness to the most stubborn and intractable truths of our time” (Joyce Carol Oates, The New York Times Book Review). Slouching Towards Bethlehem: America in the 1960s—a pivotal era of social change and generational divide. Here is Joan Didion on the “misplaced children” of Haight-Ashbury as well as John Wayne in Hollywood; folk singer Joan Baez and reclusive billionaire Howard Hughes; the extremes of both Death Valley and Las Vegas. Named to Time magazine’s list of the one hundred best and most influential nonfiction books, this is “a rare display of some of the best prose written today in this country” (The New York Times Book Review). The White Album: A New York Times bestseller, this landmark essay collection confronts the dark aftermath of the 1960s. From a jailhouse visit to Huey Newton, cofounder of the Black Panther Party, to a recording session with The Doors, from the culture of shopping malls to the contradictions of the women’s movement, Joan Didion captures the paranoia and absurdity of the era with irony and insight. And in the iconic title essay, she documents her uneasy state of mind during the years leading up to and following the Manson murders—a terrifying crime that, in her memory, surprised no one. After Henry: Whether reporting on a Hollywood murder or the “sideshows” of foreign wars, Joan Didion crystalizes her reputation as a brilliant essayist. Highlights include a portrait of the White House under the Reagans, two “actors on location”; an unexpected meditation on the Patty Hearst case; and an exposé on the racial divisions and class fault lines of New York City following the rape of the Central Park jogger. An indispensable collection from a writer on whom we can rely “to get the story straight” (Los Angeles Times).
Slouching Towards Bethlehem unlocks Revelation chapter 13 and the last 2000 years of the Christian era, with startling results. Not only can we now understand the forces shaping history and the deaths of some 270 million in 20th Century genocides but we can also project the future of Israel and the Middle East.

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