Psychogeography

Psychogeography

Hardback

By (author) Will Self, Illustrated by Ralph Steadman

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  • Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing PLC
  • Format: Hardback | 256 pages
  • Dimensions: 184mm x 230mm x 34mm | 839g
  • Publication date: 22 October 2007
  • Publication City/Country: London
  • ISBN 10: 0747590338
  • ISBN 13: 9780747590330
  • Sales rank: 115,111

Product description

Provocateurs Will Self and Ralph Steadman join forces in this post millennial meditation on the vexed relationship between psyche and place in a globalised world, bringing together for the first time the very best of their "Psychogeography" columns for the "Independent". The introduction, 'Walking to New York', is both a prelude to the verbal and visual essays that make up this extraordinary collaboration, and a revealing exploration of the split in Self's Jewish American British psyche and its relationship to the political geography of the post 9/11 world. Ranging from the Scottish Highlands to Istanbul and from Morocco to Ohio, Will Self's engaging and disturbing vision is perfectly counter pointed by Ralph Steadman's edgy and beautiful artwork.

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Author information

Will Self is the author of The Quantity Theory of Insanity, winner of the 1993 Geoffrey Faber Memorial Prize, Grey Area, Cock & Bull, My Idea of Fun, The Sweet Smell of Psychosis, Great Apes, Tough, Tough Toys for Tough, Tough Boys, Dorian, How the Dead Live, which was shortlisted for the Whitbread Novel of the Year 2002, and The Book of Dave. He lives in London. Ralph Steadman is the author of Sigmund Freud, I Leonardo, The Big I Am, The Scar-Strangled Banner, the novel Doodaaa and the memoir The Joke's Over: Memories of Hunter S. Thompson. He is also the illustrator of Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, Alice, Animal Farm and The Devil's Dictionary. He lives in Kent.

Review quote

'Brilliantly original, Will Self is one of those rare writers whose imaginations change for ever the way we see the world' JG Ballard 'Steadman has always been one of my heroes.' Raymond Briggs

Editorial reviews

Self (The Book of Dave, 2006, etc.) walks, and as he walks, he spins the shambling, freely associative web of a drunken spider.But this is the intoxicant-free Self, though his mind and prose are still on fire. Before his pen gets to business, his legs are doing the work, "parting and marrying, parting and marrying needle-limbs piercing and repiercing the fabric of reality." He is drinking from the personality of a place, tucking into the effects of geography on the emotions, turning states into states of mind, trip lines to memory, dreams and reflections. The interzones are what he conjures best: neglected and unimagined places like those along the walk from his London home to Heathrow and then from New York's JFK airport into Manhattan. It is a closely observed ramble, from the "damp tongue of leaf-pressed tarmac snaking through the grass" that leads him to Heathrow, to the old and new provocations of New York's unprepossessing neighborhoods. He shapes a gestalt "compounded of place, progress and Weltanschauung," finding umbilical linkages between distant and unique places: Gaud's La Sagrada Familia strikes him as the Lolita of sacred architecture. Self seems to have been everywhere, each place calling up his days of youth - phantasmagoria and bitter debauch - rendered evermore bizarre by Steadman's spattered, spooky artwork. As he bounces about in memory's halls, Self is also in the moment, on a quest for ambulatory satori. If enlightenment is not always within reach, he flashes with insights regarding the role of London's riot-friendly squares in generating the world's oldest representational government, the lemony light of a perfect autumn morning, the difficulty of finding cheese in the English Midlands. "You'll have to go to Iceland," says "an ancient crone of the diocese." No doubt he will.An effulgent album of insubordinate, psychogeographical postage stamps: colorful, crowded and transporting. (Kirkus Reviews)