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We Tell Ourselves Stories in Order to Live
We Tell Ourselves Stories in Order to Live: Collected Nonfiction | Joan Didion
11 posts | 8 read | 1 reading | 21 to read
(Book Jacket Status: Jacketed) Joan Didions incomparable and distinctive essays and journalism are admired for their acute, incisive observations and their spare, elegant style. Now the seven books of nonfiction that appeared between 1968 and 2003 have been brought together into one thrilling collection. Slouching Towards Bethlehem captures the counterculture of the sixties, its mood and lifestyle, as symbolized by California, Joan Baez, Haight-Ashbury. The White Album covers the revolutionary politics and the contemporary wasteland of the late sixties and early seventies, in pieces on the Manson family, the Black Panthers, and Hollywood. Salvador is a riveting look at the social and political landscape of civil war. Miami exposes the secret role this largely Latin city played in the Cold War, from the Bay of Pigs through Watergate. In After Henry Didion reports on the Reagans, Patty Hearst, and the Central Park jogger case. The eight essays in Political Fictionson censorship in the media, Gingrich, Clinton, Starr, and compassionate conservatism, among othersshow us how we got to the political scene of today. And in Where I Was From Didion shows that California was never the land of the golden dream.
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Brooke_H
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It's kind of odd to review this as if it's just one book of Didion essays. It's actually seven books. And I enjoyed some of them so much more than others, which is not Didion's fault—her writing is always superlative—it's just that some of the subjects she writes about aren't my thing. "Salvador," for example was really hard to finish. The stand-outs (surprising no one) are "Slouching Towards Bethlethem" and "The White Album.”

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Brooke_H
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TFW you‘re on pg 1024 of a 1104-pg book...

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LisaAnnGallagher
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DivineDiana
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Fascinated with this woman. Even more so after watching the documentary about her. #tbr #stories #nuyear

TrishB Good pick 👍🏻 2y
Leftcoastzen Yes that documentary so awesome! Love her writing. 2y
Eggs Love Didion 2y
Cinfhen I need to try her....what book would you recommend as a good starting point!?!? 2y
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DivineDiana
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A collection of nonfiction stories should count, right? #shortstories #tbr #readingwomenmonth

thereadingwomen Absolutely! 3y
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KateTheBookworm
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For #Marchintoreading day 29, here is my #bookbag! My partner made it for me for my 28th birthday because he knows I worship Didion. It's perfection. ❤️?
"That was the year, my twenty-eighth, when I was discovering that not all of the promises would be kept, that some things are in fact irrevocable and that it had counted after all, every evasion and every procrastination, every mistake, every word, all of it."
Sing to me, Joan!

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jdtchicago

We tell ourselves stories in order to live. The princess is caged in the consulate...We look for the sermon in the suicide, for the social or moral lesson in the murder of five. We interpret what we see, select the most workable of the multiple choices. We live entirely... by the imposition of a narrative line upon disparate images, by the 'ideas' with which we have learned to freeze the shifting phantasmagoria — which is our actual experience.

Novels Nothing more to say: We tell and read stories in order to live.... 3y
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readordierachel
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Here's some from the shelves. I haven't been brave enough to crack the Terkel yet. #ilikebigbooks #booktober

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DivineDiana
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I usually think of short stories as fiction but this is a collection of non fiction essays. It is what I have, so I'm putting it out there! #shortstories #septphotochallenge #somethingforseptember

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DivineDiana
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What a fantastic day! Surprise birthday gift arrived! Not one, but two books on my TBR list!

SusanInTiburon Lucky you! Pretty kitty looks almost as surprised as you! 4y
anwade88 Yes! Awesome! And happy birthday :) 4y
DivineDiana @Susanintiburon and @anwade88 Yes, I am lucky! Thank you both! 4y
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Seonjoon
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Library presents! Joan Didion (now quite famously) wrote, "We tell ourselves stories in order to live." I'm so looking forward to re-reading her essays--with a side-serving of Wallace Stevens. Very happy w/ my library haul today!