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The Odd Woman and the City: A Memoir by…
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The Odd Woman and the City: A Memoir

by Vivian Gornick

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» See also 5 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 6 (next | show all)
walking, love and friendship, gender, city, life ( )
  beckydj | Mar 5, 2016 |
I love Gornick's love of NYC, her long walks all over the city, the snatches she records of verbal exchanges on the streets, sketches of her recent and current life. To me, the best was her aperçu about a poetry reading by a former Public Theater actor/friend, who had fought back from aphasia to perform once in his apartment for friends. A short book, but moving. ( )
1 vote Diane-bpcb | Jan 25, 2016 |
I love her take on life. ( )
  ccayne | Oct 4, 2015 |
Expected to enjoy this more then I did. Really about Gornick's friends and associates and people she came in contact with in her walks around NYC.
  bogopea | Sep 27, 2015 |
This is a brief but wonderful reflection on living in New York City, on living alone and on the author's friendship with Leonard, who she has met weekly for many years to share dinner and a movie. Sensitive, thoughtful and funny: who could ask for anything more? ( )
2 vote gbelik | Aug 7, 2015 |
Showing 1-5 of 6 (next | show all)
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Leonard and I are having coffee at a restaurant in midtown.
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Book description
A memoir of self-discovery and the dilemma of connection in our time, The Odd Woman and the City explores the rhythms, chance encounters, and ever-changing friendships of urban life that forge the sensibility of a fiercely independent woman who has lived out her conflicts, not her fantasies, in a city (New York) that has done the same. Running steadily through the book is Vivian Gornick’s exchange of more than twenty years with Leonard, a gay man who is sophisticated about his own unhappiness, whose friendship has "shed more light on the mysterious nature of ordinary human relations than has any other intimacy" she has known. The exchange between Gornick and Leonard acts as a Greek chorus to the main action of the narrator’s continual engagement on the street with grocers, derelicts, and doormen; people on the bus, cross-dressers on the corner, and acquaintances by the handful. In Leonard she sees herself reflected plain; out on the street she makes sense of what she sees.
Written as a narrative collage that includes meditative pieces on the making of a modern feminist, the role of the flaneur in urban literature, and the evolution of friendship over the past two centuries, The Odd Woman and the City beautifully bookends Gornick’s acclaimed Fierce Attachments, in which we first encountered her rich relationship with the ultimate metropolis. (Amazon)
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0374298602, Hardcover)

A contentious, deeply moving ode to friendship, love, and urban life in the spirit of Fierce Attachments

A memoir of self-discovery and the dilemma of connection in our time, The Odd Woman and the City explores the rhythms, chance encounters, and ever-changing friendships of urban life that forge the sensibility of a fiercely independent woman who has lived out her conflicts, not her fantasies, in a city (New York) that has done the same. Running steadily through the book is Vivian Gornick’s exchange of more than twenty years with Leonard, a gay man who is sophisticated about his own unhappiness, whose friendship has "shed more light on the mysterious nature of ordinary human relations than has any other intimacy" she has known. The exchange between Gornick and Leonard acts as a Greek chorus to the main action of the narrator’s continual engagement on the street with grocers, derelicts, and doormen; people on the bus, cross-dressers on the corner, and acquaintances by the handful. In Leonard she sees herself reflected plain; out on the street she makes sense of what she sees.
     Written as a narrative collage that includes meditative pieces on the making of a modern feminist, the role of the flaneur in urban literature, and the evolution of friendship over the past two centuries, The Odd Woman and the City beautifully bookends Gornick’s acclaimed Fierce Attachments, in which we first encountered her rich relationship with the ultimate metropolis.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:23:32 -0400)

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