This American Essay Collection

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Brought to you by the twin juggernauts of This American Life host Ira Glass and the Dave-Eggers-founded 826 (Insert City) phenomenon that is scaring the bejesus out of the specter of illiteracy everywhere by inspiring America’s Children to new heights of literacy, this book will make you laugh, cry, beg for mercy, question everything, and possibly hyperventilate (but in a good way). Proceeds benefit 826CHI. Many of these incredibly well-researched and witty essays might bring This American Life to mind. We submit, therefore, recommended background listening.

“Six Degrees of Lois Weisberg”, in which Malcolm Gladwell demonstrates that just a few people might be the glue that sticks us all together:
“The Tighten Up” by Archie Bell and the Drells

“Crazy Things seem Normal, Normal Things Seem Crazy”, in which Chuck Klosterman visits Val Kilmer’s ranch:
“People are strange” by The Doors

“Fortune’s Smile: World Series of Poker” in which James McManus visits the World Series of Poker:
The Gambler by Kenny Rogers

Among the Thugs, in which Bill Buford follows English footie hooligans as they wreak havoc:
“Thug Life” by Tupac Shakur (warning, explicit lyrics).

“Jonathan Lebed’s Extracurricular Activities” : in which Michael Lewis explores how a 15-year-old made hundreds of thousands through stock market fraud :
“Naive Melody” by The Talking Heads.

“Host” : in which David Foster Wallace goes behind the scenes on a conservative talk radio show and expounds on recent changes in the radio broadcast market: Anything by Skinny Puppy, Nine Inch Nails, or Barry Manilow

“The American Man, Age Ten” : in which Susan Orlean explores what it’s like to be age ten and male in the U. S. of A. : “I’m an American Man” by Sammy Hagar

Thanks to Juma, Ryan, and Norm for songs. -Ed Scripsi

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Published in: on March 26, 2008 at 5:14 pm  Leave a Comment  

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