"The nonfiction novel of our moment."--Jonathan Lethem A wide-ranging, rule-bending collection from "a major American writer" (The New York Times)--reclaiming the power of attention in an age of constant distraction
One of Granta's Best of Young American Novelists, Joshua Cohen arrives with his first collection of nonfiction, the culmination of two decades of writing and thought about life in the digital age. In essays, memoir, criticism, diary entries, and letters--many appearing here for the first time--Cohen covers the full depth and breadth of modern life: politics, literature, art, music, travel, the media, and psychology, and subjects as diverse as Google, Donald Trump, Bernie Sanders, fictional animals, Gustav Mahler, Aretha Franklin, John Zorn, landscape photography, fake Caravaggios, Wikipedia, Gertrude Stein, Edward Snowden, Jonathan Franzen, Olympic women's fencing, Atlantic City casinos, the closing of the Ringling Bros. circus, and Azerbaijan.
Throughout ATTENTION, Cohen directs his sharp gaze at home and abroad, calling upon his extraordinary erudition and unrivaled ability to draw connections between seemingly unlike things to show us how to live without fear in a world overflowing with information. In each piece, he projects a quality of thought that is uniquely his, and a voice as witty, profound, and distinct as any in American letters.
At this crucial juncture in history, ATTENTION is a guide for the perplexed--a handbook for anyone hoping to bring the wisdom of the past into the culture of the future.
Advance praise for ATTENTION
"Cohen, one of our crucial young novelists, has written the nonfiction novel of our moment, formed of a constellation of investigations and inklings. No one's done such a thing so well since George Trow or Joan Didion or Norman Mailer, if ever. It's chasteningly brilliant, and the kind of chastening we unfortunately need."--Jonathan Lethem
"Joshua Cohen is one of my favorite nonfiction writers. This book is a cause for celebration."--Elif Batuman
Joshua Cohen was born in 1980 in Atlantic City. He has written novels (Moving Kings, Book of Numbers), short fiction (Four New Messages), and nonfiction for The New York Times, Harper's Magazine, n+1, London Review of Books, The New Republic, and others. From 2001 to 2007, he worked as a journalist throughout Europe. In 2017 he was named one of Granta's Best of Young American Novelists. He lives in New York City.