The new introduction and afterword bring fresh relevance to this insightful rumination on reading as a path to critical thinking, individual and political identity, civic engagement, and resistance. The former LA Times book critic expands his short book to include the considerations of fake news, siloed information, and the connections between critical thinking as the key component of engaged citizenship and resistance. Here is the case for reading as a political act, and for the ways it enlarges the world and our frames of reference, all the while keeping us engaged.
Reception hosted by co-sponsor Alta Magazine.
David L. Ulin is a critic, essayist, editor, and novelist. He is a 2015 Guggenheim Fellow and recipient of the California Book Award and has been shortlisted for the PEN/Diamonstein-Spielvogel Award for the Art of the Essay. His writing has appeared in the LA Times (where he spent ten years as book editor and book critic), the Atlantic Monthly, the Nation, the New York Times, the Paris Review, Virginia Quarterly Review, AGNI, Zyzzyva, Columbia Journalism Review, and on NPR's All Things Considered. He is assistant professor of English at the University of Southern California. He is the author of Sidewalking: Coming to Terms with Los Angeles and Labyrinth.
Oscar Villalon is managing editor of the San Francisco literary journal ZYZZYVA and former book editor at the San Francisco Chronicle. His work has appeared in VQR, The Believer, Zocalo, NPR.org, and other publications. He lives in San Francisco.