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  About

Michael Dirda

Reviewer


Michael Dirda
Michael Dirda
Locus Publications -- Amelia Beamer

Michael Dirda, a book columnist for The Washington Post, received the 1993 Pulitzer Prize for criticism. He is the author of the memoir “An Open Book...

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Stories by Michael Dirda

Arts and Culture : Book Review

The Story of Egypt


A new book on ancient Egypt is full of fascinating material, including a re-examination of Cleopatra’s death, a look at the fluidity of sexual identity, and a tale about being carried off by a hippopotamus.

Posted on Oct 8, 2016 READ MORE

Arts and Culture : Book Review

Primo Levi, Complete


“I deliberately assumed the calm and sober language of the witness, not the lament of the victim or the anger of the avenger. ... It is you who are the judges.” Those are the words of Primo Levi, one of the most essential writers of the 20th century—particularly of the Holocaust.

Posted on Oct 9, 2015 READ MORE

Arts and Culture : Book Review

W.H. Auden, Complete


These six volumes of the work of W.H. Auden call to mind the great poet’s comment on the writing of another author: “It is a book in which one can browse for a lifetime without exhausting its treasures.”

Posted on Sep 25, 2015 READ MORE
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Arts and Culture : Book Review

The Most Dangerous Book


This “biography of a book” presents James Joyce’s “Ulysses” as the work that broke the crusading spirit of the U.S. government’s literary censorship during the early 20th century.

Posted on Jun 27, 2014 READ MORE

Arts and Culture : Book Review

Call Me Burroughs


William S. Burroughs, the subject of a new biography, probes methods of subjugation—drugs, torture, sex, laws, cults, brainwashing and language. Still, there is always “one Mark you cannot beat. The Mark Inside.”

Posted on Feb 7, 2014 READ MORE

Arts and Culture : Book Review

No Humbug Here


W.W. Norton

This year, try reading instead of watching “A Christmas Carol,” and pay attention to its apolitical, even reactionary views on social change. There’s more to this Dickens classic than Alastair Sims and the Muppets.

Posted on Dec 27, 2013 READ MORE

Arts and Culture : Book Review

MaddAddam


Nan A. Talese

The concluding volume in Margaret Atwood’s “dystopian trilogy”—a vision of global disaster in the not too distant future—is a brilliant piece of social science fiction.

Posted on Sep 20, 2013 READ MORE

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Bio

Michael Dirda
Michael Dirda
Locus Publications -- Amelia Beamer

Michael Dirda, a book columnist for The Washington Post, received the 1993 Pulitzer Prize for criticism. He is the author of the memoir “An Open Book and of four collections of essays: Readings”, “Bound to Please”, “Book by Book”, “Classics for Pleasure”, and, most recently, “On Conan Doyle: Or, The Whole Art of Storytelling”. Besides writing regularly about books for various journals and newspapers, he is a frequent lecturer and an occasional college teacher.

Bio   |   Book Reviews   |   Books

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