The White Album Essays

Joan Didion

Farrar, Straus and Giroux

0374532079

9780374532079

Trade Paperback

224 Pages

$15.00

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First published in 1979, The White Album is a journalistic mosaic of American life in the late 1960s and throughout the 1970s. It includes, among other bizarre artifacts and personalities, reportage on the dark journeys and impulses of the Manson family, a visit to a Black Panther Party press conference, the story of John Paul Getty's museum, a meditation on the romance of water in an arid landscape, and reflections on the swirl and confusion that marked this era. With commanding sureness of mood and language, Didion exposes the realities and dreams of an age of self-discovery whose spiritual center was California.

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Praise for The White Album

"All of the essays manifest not only [Didion's] intelligence but an instinct for details that continue to emit pulsations in the reader's memory and a style that is spare, subtly musical in its phrasing and exact. Add to these her highly vulnerable sense of herself, and the result is a voice like no other in contemporary journalism."—Robert Towers, The New York Times Book Review

"Didion manages to make the sorry stuff of troubled times (bike movies, for instance, and Bishop James Pike) as interesting and suggestive as the monuments that win her dazzled admiration (Georgia O'Keeffe, the Hoover Dam, the mountains around Bogotá) . . . A timely and elegant collection."—The New Yorker

"Didion is an original journalistic talent who can strike at the heart, or the absurdity, of a matter in our contemporary wasteland with quick, graceful strokes."—The San Francisco Chronicle
 
 
Table of Contents

I. THE WHITE ALBUM

The White Album

II. CALIFORNIA REPUBLIC
James Pike, American
Holy Water
Many Mansions
The Getty
Bureaucrats
Good Citizens
Notes Toward a Dreampolitik

III. WOMEN
The Women's Movement
Doris Lessing
Georgia O'Keeffe

IV. SOJOURNS
In the Islands
In Hollywood
In Bed
On the Road
On the Mall
In Bogota
At the Dam

V. ON THE MORNING AFTER THE SIXTIES
On the Morning After the Sixties
Quiet Days in Malibu

Reviews from Goodreads

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BOOK EXCERPTS

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Joan Didion is highly regarded as a writer of both nonfiction and fiction and received the National Book Foundation’s Medal for Distinguished Contribution to American Letters in 2007. She lives in New York City.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

  • Joan Didion

  • Joan Didion is the author of several novels and works of nonfiction, among them Slouching Towards Bethlehem, The White Album, Miami, Salvador, After Henry, and Political Fictions. She lives in New York City.
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