Shteyngart & Cohen at Vox Tablet. Shteyngart, btw, also just got a mind-erasingly ecstatic review from Michiko Kakutani. Cohen, not to be outdone, is running for mayor of Annapolis, Maryland.
Did somebody say politics? Not bloody likely. But anyway, let’s meet Emily Henochowicz. I got turned onto her personal blog after reading about her in the New York Times. Seems the 21 year old artist / exchange student / demonstrator lost an eye after being shot in the face with a tear gas canister by Israeli police. But that news is almost two months old. The article I read, which went up on 7/27, is about how the Israeli Ministry of Defense is refusing to pay (and denying responsibility for) her hospital bills. Anyway, if you go over to her blog you can check out Emily’s art, including this pair of one-eye-favoring glasses that she designed herself.
The Economist had a great cover story this week (last week?) on the absolute fuckedness (my paraphrase) of the American prison system. The web version seems to be behind a paywall, but maybe you can find the issue at the story. Did you know that over 1 in 100 Americans is currently incarcerated, and that if you factor in people on parole and probation, the figure rises to 1 in 31* Americans under some form of corrective supervision. Related, this Nation piece about BP’s use of prison labor in Louisiana.
Also, the Economist apparently has an arts/books blog now. It is called Prospero, and here’s an interesting piece about arch-agent Andrew Wylie partnering directly with Amazon (and bypassing publishers entirely) to release e-book editions of Portnoy’s Complaint, Updike’s Rabbit books, and a suite of others.
Finally, Unsaid editor David McLendon announces on Facebook that Allison Titus is the 2010 recipient of the Transport of the Aim Poetry Prize. You might remember that Titus’s Sum of Every Lost Ship was one of five small press poetry titles to read this summer. I liked her book a whole bunch. So congrats, Allison! And a hearty cheers to Unsaid.
*For a few days this read “1 in 3.” Thanks to Steven Augustine for catching the typo.
I feel loathe to spread attention about a dude who goes by the goober moniker “The Jackal,” but the story is moderately interesting enough to bring up: supposedly notorious literary agent Andrew Wylie makes a supposed splash by selling e-book rights for books that had not supposedly had previous e-rights contracted, including Updike, Nabokov, and etc., in an exclusive contract to Amazon via his newly established Odyssey Editions, formed entirely for ebook handling. Now there’s a big legal kerfuffle over who gets to do what with what and why to who and for how much and why not me and what are you doing motherfucker that’s my vacation house #2 fund we’re talkin’ bout. Moby Lives has the full scoop.
Agents. I mean look at this guy!
Now look at him again, in 1972!
If you’d like to buy a copy of that picture to hang over your bed, the pricing & information has been included in the image like a good salesboy.
I wish George Bush era brains had popularized Styrofoam-books instead. That seems more fun.