Seek: Reports from the Edges of America and Beyond

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9780413771117: Seek: Reports from the Edges of America and Beyond
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As a novelist, Denis Johnson is renowned for his portraits of the dispossessed lurking at the fringes of American life. In this collection of 11 essays written over 20 years, he looks at how groups of various dispossessed people came to form a new, often threatening identity. Johnson travels through war-ravaged Liberia in murderously unpredictable company, joins a Bikers for Jesus rally in Texas, and hangs out with local militia groups who hate Jews, Blacks and taxes. He finds true believers, whether it be in God, the goverment, guns or all three, and feels the depth of their conviction by travelling with them to places where horror and beauty exist side by side.

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'Is Denis Johnson braver, more reckless, or just more foolish than most of those who pretend to the title "journalist"? It doesn't matter, in the end - he is willing to place his lonesome ass in the way of seriously bad and scary stuff, and then bring back the tale told better than it's ever been told before' - Esquire

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Part political disquisition, part travel journal, part self-exploration, Seek is a collection of essays and articles in which Denis Johnson essentially takes on the world.And not an obliging, easygoing world either; but rather one in which horror and beauty exist in such proximity that they might well be interchangeable. Where violence and poverty and moral transgression go unchecked, even unnoticed. A world of such wild, rocketing energy that, grasping it, anything at all is possible.

Whether traveling through war-ravaged Liberia, mingling with the crowds at a Christian Biker rally, exploring his own authority issues through the lens of this nation's militia groups, or attempting to unearth his inner resources while mining for gold in the wilds of Alaska, Johnson writes with a mixture of humility and humorous candor that is everywhere present.

With the breathtaking and often haunting lyricism for which his work is renowned, Johnson considers in these pieces our need for transcendence. And, as readers of his previous work know, Johnson's path to consecration frequently requires a limning of the darkest abyss. If the path to knowledge lies in experience, Seek is a fascinating record of Johnson's profoundly moving pilgrimage.

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ISBN 10: 0060930470 ISBN 13: 9780060930479
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