Brooklyn Is: Southeast of the Island: Travel Notes by James Agee

By James Agee

For the 1st time in e-book form-a nice writer's vintage occasion of the essence of Brooklyn.

In 1939, James Agee was once assigned to jot down an editorial on Brooklyn for a unique factor of Fortune on manhattan urban. The draft was once rejected for inventive differences,and remained unpublished until eventually it seemed in Esquire in 1968 less than the name Southeast of the Island: shuttle Notes.

Crossing the borough from the brownstone heights over the Brooklyn Bridge out via backstreet neighborhoods like Flatbush, Midwood, and Sheepshead Bay that roll silently to the ocean, Agee captured in 10,000 extraordinary phrases, the essence of a spot and its humans. Propulsive, lyrical, jazzy, and soft, itspitch-perfect descriptions suffer while Brooklyn adjustments; Agee's essay is a brand new York vintage. Resonant with the rhythms of Hart Crane, Walt Whitman, and Thomas Wolfe, it takes its position along Alfred Kazin's A Walker within the City as a superb writer's love-song to Brooklyn and along E. B. White's Here Is New York as a vital assertion of where such a lot of name home.

James Agee used to be born in Knoxville, Tennessee, in 1909. one of many nice prose stylists of the previous century, Agee wrote in lots of forms-poetry, brief tales, novels, essays, observation, and feedback. In 1958 he received the Pulitzer Prize for fiction for A loss of life within the Family, and he additionally wrote the vintage account of negative Southern farmers, Let Us Now compliment recognized Men, observed by means of Walker Evans's documentary pictures. With John Huston, he wrote the Oscar-nominated screenplay for The African Queen, and he was once an influential movie and theater critic for Time and The Nation. James Agee died in 1955 of a middle assault in a brand new York urban taxicab. within the fall of 2005, the Library of the United States will post a two-volume choice of his writings.

Jonathan Lethem's novels contain Fortress of Solitude and Motherless Brooklyn, which received the nationwide publication Critics Circle Award, his most up-to-date booklet is The sadness Artist. Lethem used to be born and raised in Brooklyn, the place he nonetheless lives.

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Every detail, from the former death to the former birth, could be traced out by continui ng this queer psychological process. The mo nk admitted that the concentration involved was fear­ fully difficult and that few Buddhists were ever able to go far with the method. He had himself practised the meditations for twenty years and could testify to their effectiveness. But the most prolonged efforts were needed to wrest these memories from reluctant Nature. I have neither the desire nor the competency to dogmatize in the matter, but in the light of this explanation one must smile satirically at the crop of Queens and Cleopatras which has swiftly followed the trail of this doctrine of re-embodiment, since the latter has appeared in the West.

For the temple of Gangotri itselfis right in the perpetual snow-line. It is easy enough for a European, who is fairly inured to the cold winters of his own continent, to endure Himalayan cold, but it is a matter of painful acclimatlzation and some suffering for these thinly-clad Hindus to penetrate into such a re gion.

There is another risk for me should I venture to make political prophecies in this country, which seethes with Oriental intrigue and suspicion. I am reminded of a little-known incident of the last war as I think of this danger. That much-admired, much-maligned and much-misunderstood man, the late Colonel T. E. Lawrence, reached a critical period of his campaign in Arabia, encountering stubborn obstacles that were not to be overcome easily. But by a flash of his famous genius he hit on the novel idea of sending a request to London for professional stage magicians to be sent out to travel among the tribes on the borders of the Red Sea and Mediterran ean.

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