Having learnt Aikido with the Tokyo riot police (ANGRY WHITE PYJAMAS), hunted for the world's longest snake in the jungles of the Far East (BIG SNAKE), Robert Twigger now turns his attention to other traditionally male pursuits and pastimes (some of which are fairly close to home, some of which are more extreme), and looks at the questions these raise about masculinity and the role of man in modern society. BEING A MAN isn't exactly a search for the lost attributes of primitive man - hunting, shooting, making fires, etc - but, hooked on a nostalgia for past writers such as Hemingway, the book features Twigger participating in, and writing on: the informal rules and thrill seeking of solo climbing, bullfighting in Spain, the 'illicit pleasure of buying my first gun', and the rules of survival with a tribe of Naga headhunters - the sort of activities and pursuits often scorned in the modern, interiorised office-based world. He also looks at why men feel the urge to escape in this way, and why, even in mundane everyday life, modern man is trapped in an endless loop of having to prove himself a man.
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Robert Twigger won the Somerset Maugham and William Hill Sports Book of the Year awards for ANGRY WHITE PYJAMAS. BIG SNAKE was filmed for Channel 4.Review:
A beguiling stylist, he interleaves reminiscence and aphorism to produce something wholly original. A tour de force. -- Will Self Twigger is acute and disarming, and his book on manliness has the refreshing virtue of declining to see women as the enemy -- Robert Winder * New Statesman * If Twigger really is lamenting a passing age of masculinity, he does so in quixotic style in this amusing memoir * The Times * He is certainly very good on the allure of some male-dominated subcultures * Guardian *
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