Slouching Towards Bethlehem: Essays (FSG Classics) (Paperback)
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After being blown away by two essays in Jia Tolentino’s Trick Mirror, I revisited this 1960s/’70s portrait of America. In perfect balance, Didion is both inconspicuous and whip-smart in her exploration of place, making her a prime witness to the ways in which a shifting landscape changes its characters and vice versa.— Betsy
The first nonfiction work by one of the most distinctive prose stylists of our era, Joan Didion's Slouching Towards Bethlehem remains, decades after its first publication, the essential portrait of America—particularly California—in the sixties. It focuses on such subjects as John Wayne and Howard Hughes, growing up a girl in California, ruminating on the nature of good and evil in a Death Valley motel room, and, especially, the essence of San Francisco's Haight-Ashbury, the heart of the counterculture.
About the Author
Joan Didion is the author of many works of fiction and nonfiction, as well as several screenplays written with her late husband, John Gregory Dunne. Her books include The White Album, Play It As It Lays, and Slouching Towards Bethlehem. She lives in New York City.
“In her portraits of people, Didion is not out to expose but to understand, and she shows us actors and millionaires, doomed brides and naive acid-trippers, left wing ideologues and snobs of the Hawaiian aristocracy in a way that makes them neither villainous nor glamorous, but alive and botched and often mournfully beautiful . . . A rich display of some of the best prose written today in this country.” —Dan Wakefield, The New York Times Book Review