But Enough About Me: Why We Read Other People's Livesby Nancy K. Miller
In these memoirs, Nancy K. Miller (comparative literature, The Graduate Center, CUNY) tells "how a girl who grew up in the 1950s became a feminist critic in the 1970s; how this unexpected development was shared with a generation of other literary girls in the academy; and how, in the course of an academic career, I (the girl) came to see myself as part of a wider… See more details below
In these memoirs, Nancy K. Miller (comparative literature, The Graduate Center, CUNY) tells "how a girl who grew up in the 1950s became a feminist critic in the 1970s; how this unexpected development was shared with a generation of other literary girls in the academy; and how, in the course of an academic career, I (the girl) came to see myself as part of a wider narrative about women and aging." Includes 17 b&w photographs. Portions of the book have appeared elsewhere in somewhat different versions. No subject index. Annotation c. Book News, Inc.,Portland, OR
Miller's book seems more than its sum, larger than its slim weight in the hand... fascinating... poignant... looms large.
Nancy K. Miller's new book is an elegant and witty meditation of self-knowledge, particularly for women. It should be read by all of us who are struggling, in these strange, loudly postfeminist times, to make sense of our stories as they have been interpolated by post-World War II America.
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In her poignant, mesmerizing new book, Nancy Miller presents the definitive defense of memoir, that much-maligned genre: autobiography, she proves, is not a solipsistic act, but a communal, relational practice. Her clear prose, brimming with ironies, gives unadulterated pleasure; blending narrative and analysis it sets a stylish new standard for innovative critical writing.
Miller's strikingly original voice surprises and delights readers with insights into the paradox of memoir--that the stories we tell about ourselves intimately connect us to other people.
But Enough About Me is doubly graced: being both a brilliant comic memoir about coming of age in the 1950s and 1960s and a passionate defense of the autobiographer's art. Nancy K. Miller has been writing extraordinary books for some time now, but for eloquence, daring, and sheer moral sentience her new book comes as close to perfection as anything she has done. She is profound on the subject of what 'life-writing' means for women--she thinks it, paradoxically, our best rebuke to narcissism and self-absorption--then proves it by way of a personal narrative in which wit, truthfulness, and a deep respect for the lives of others combine in an equal and inspiriting measure.
With a touch as light as it is deft, her memoir connects the dots that are some of this century's 'collective turning points,' just by telling where she was, what she was reading and wearing. I can't remember when I last read a work of non-fiction that gave me so much pleasure from beginning to end.
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