n+1on the 10th anniversary of Britney Spears’ “Baby One More Time”: “After her came the deluge: the end of the record industry as we know it, yes, but also the end of America as it used to conceive of itself.”
We highlighted the first installment of President Obama’s conversation with Marilynne Robinson, published in TheNew York Review of Books. Part II is now here. We have a fewpieces on Robinson to pair with it.
In an excerpt of Out of Time, a new book on “the pleasures and perils of ageing,” author Lynne Segalmakes a case that many iconic male writers — among them Philip Roth, John Updike and Martin Amis — display in their works a belief that the slow loss of virility is one of the most tragic effects of growing older for men. Citing passages from Toward the End of Time and Portnoy’s Complaint, she finds evidence that these writers’ depictions of masculinity reveal “obdurate social hierarchies of gender and ageing.” (Related: Keith Meattoon advice you can glean from Philip Roth’s work.)
This week, Richard Ford published his first novel in a while to feature Frank Bascombe, the protagonist of his Pulitzer-winning book The Sportswriter. At Salon, our own Lydia Kieslingposits a through-line from Bascombe to a certain TV gangster, arguing that The Sopranos shares its view of manhood with Ford’s novels. You could also read our own Michael Bourne on Ford’s 2012 book, Canada.
“Part of the allure of Bosnia for westerners, I think, has been the surprising nearness of the East. To put it more bluntly, and problematically: in Bosnia the East is tamed, less scarily dogmatic.” Elvis Begodraws a parallel with Madame Bovary at Bookslut.