Lonesome Rangers: Homeless Minds, Promised Lands, Fugitive Cultures

Lonesome Rangers: Homeless Minds, Promised Lands, Fugitive Cultures

by John Leonard

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Overview

Lonesome Rangers: Homeless Minds, Promised Lands, Fugitive Cultures by John Leonard

John Leonard, “the fastest wit in the East” (The New York Times Book Review), is back with the offbeat, wide-ranging style that earned his last book, When the Kissing Had to Stop, a place among the Voice Literary Supplement’s “25 Favorites of 1999.” Now, with an eye to the social and political experience of writers, Leonard adopts a broad definition of exile.

He addresses Robert Putnam’s Bowling Alone, where exile manifests itself in solitary bowling, a reflection of a declining sense of community. He considers Salman Rushdie as rock’n’roll Orpheus, who—after ten years in fatwa-enforced exile—bears a striking resemblance to his continually disappearing characters. And Leonard also explores Primo Levi’s exile of survival, Bruce Chatwin’s self-imposed exile in travel, as well as the work of Saul Bellow, Ralph Ellison, Phillip Roth, Barbara Kingsolver, and Don DeLillo, among others.

As always, Leonard’s writing jumps off the page, engaging the reader in what the Washington Post calls his “laugh-out-loud magic with words.”

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781565846944
Publisher: New Press, The
Publication date: 02/01/2002
Pages: 352
Product dimensions: 5.50(w) x 8.25(h) x (d)

About the Author

John Leonard, “the fastest wit in the East” (The New York Times Book Review), is back with the offbeat, wide-ranging style that earned his last book, When the Kissing Had to Stop, a place among the Voice Literary Supplement’s “25 Favorites of 1999.” Now, with an eye to the social and political experience of writers, Leonard adopts a broad definition of exile.

He addresses Robert Putnam’s Bowling Alone, where exile manifests itself in solitary bowling, a reflection of a declining sense of community. He considers Salman Rushdie as rock’n’roll Orpheus, who—after ten years in fatwa-enforced exile—bears a striking resemblance to his continually disappearing characters. And Leonard also explores Primo Levi’s exile of survival, Bruce Chatwin’s self-imposed exile in travel, as well as the work of Saul Bellow, Ralph Ellison, Phillip Roth, Barbara Kingsolver, and Don DeLillo, among others.

As always, Leonard’s writing jumps off the page, engaging the reader in what the Washington Post calls his “laugh-out-loud magic with words.”

Table of Contents

Elsewhere: An Introductionxiii
Part 1Down Among the Intellectuals
Primo Levi Reads Franz Kafka3
Rimbaud and Orwell: Radical Icons16
Arthur Koestler, Homeless Mind30
Mary McCarthyism40
Elizabeth Hardwick Meets Herman Melville53
Norman Podhoretz, Alone at Last64
Saul Bellow (1): Not Dead Yet74
Bruce Chatwin in Dreamtime83
I Say It's Spinach92
Part 2The Politics of Fiction
Philip Roth (1): Bedtime for Bolsheviks103
Philip Roth (2): Skin Game113
Saul Bellow (2): Bloom Buried125
Ralph Ellison, Sort Of (Plus Hemingway and Salinger)135
Toni Cade Bambara in Atlanta, Tom Wolfe Full of It147
Don DeLillo Minimalizes153
The Novels of Richard Powers165
Barbara Kingsolver: Out of Africa183
Robert Stone in Jerusalem189
Salman Rushdie Goes Underground196
Jachym Topol's Lonely Hearts Club Band209
Part 3Lost Causes
Dancing to a Tune by Eugene V. Debs229
Why Socialism Never Happened Here240
America, the Solitary Vice248
Puff, the Magic Cyberdragon258
Rhapsody in Red, White, Blue, and Glitz264
Blowing His Nose in the Wind287
Part 4Epilogue (Am I Blue?)
How the Caged Bird Learns to Sing301

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