I, etcetera Stories

Susan Sontag




Trade Paperback

256 Pages



Request Desk Copy Request Exam Copy
In eight stories, this singular collection of short fiction written over the course of ten years explores the terrain of modern urban life. In reflective, telegraphic prose, Susan Sontag confronts the reader with exposed workings of an impassioned intellect in narratives seamed with many of the themes of her essays—the nature of knowing, our relationship with the past, and the future in an alienated present.


Praise for I, etcetera

"These short stories establish Sontag's originality . . . her unique vision, her success with experiments in the form . . . Sontag makes a wonderful stew of the past, the life caught in memory and imagination, serves it all up lavishly laced with silences, and provides us with a gourmand's series of short courses."—Doris Grumbach, Los Angeles Times

"The eight stories in I, etcetera reflect a vital and restless imagination cooking away in several directions . . . There is an abundance of those startling ironies and wry, quirky jokes that make Sontag so tempting to quote . . . [The book] possesses its own kind of spirit and nerve, and it takes some magnificent chances."—Anne Tyler, The New Republic

"The book not only confronts and explores the life which is traveled rather than lived, it records a life fully lived in the face of all such doubts. No pain or horror is avoided, no occasion for despair is ducked . . . 'Debriefing,' the most moving story in the book, [is] surely a small masterpiece."—Michael Wood, The New York Review of Books

"Sontag's collection of short stories is a pleasure to read—inventive, witty, intelligent . . . She embraces our language and the accumulation of our culture. She hears everything—echoes of dead rhetoric; glorious clichés that deaden our response to castles, sunsets, bays—and hears everywhere an elevation of the daily commonplace in the grand tour that must never end."—The Saturday Review

"The story 'Unguided Tour' is Miss Sontag's apotheosis as a fiction writer . . . Sontag, the literary and social critic, is entirely at home in fiction, is exhilarated, even transfigured by it."—Anatole Broyard, The New York Times


Read an Excerpt

Susan Sontag is the author of four novels, The Benefactor, Death Kit, The Volcano Lover and In America, which won the 2000 National Book Award for fiction; and five works of nonfiction, among them On Photography, which won the National Book Critics' Circle Award for criticism, Illness as Metaphor and AIDS and Its Metaphors, and most recently, Where the Stress Falls. She lives in New York City. In 2001 she was awarded the Jerusalem Prize for the body of her work.
Read the full excerpt


  • Susan Sontag

  • Susan Sontag became a cultural figure upon the publication of her pathbreaking collection of essays Against Interpretation in 1966.  She went on to write four novels, including In America, which won the National Book Award for Fiction, as well as a collection of stories, several plays, and seven subsequent works of nonfiction, among them On Photography, Illness as Metaphor, and Regarding the Pain of Others. Her many international honors included the Jerusalem Prize in 2001 and the Friedenspreis (Peace Prize) of the German Book Trade in 2003. She died in New York City on December 28, 2004.
  • Susan Sontag Mikhail Lemkhin