Psychogeography by Will Self
Disentangling the Modern Conundrum of Psyche and Place

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Synopsis

For those interested in the connection between people and place, the best of the decade long collaboration between literary brat packer Will Self and gonzo illustrator Ralph Steadman. Opening with a dazzling new 20,000-word essay on walking from London to New York, Psychogeography is a collection of 50 short pieces written over the last four years, together with 50 four-color illustrations by Ralph Steadman. In Psychogeography Self and Steadman explore the relationship between psyche and place in the contemporary world.  Self thinks most people have a "wind-screen-based virtuality" on long- and short-distance travel. We drive, take buses and trains, fly. To combat this compromised reality, Will Self walks, relating intimately to place, as pedestrians do. Ranging in subject from swimming the Ganges to motorcycling across the Australian outback, shopping in an Iowa mall to surfing a tsunami, Psychogeography is at once a map of our world and the psychoanalysis of the way we inhabit it. The pieces are serious, humorous, facetious, and rambunctious. Psychogeography, the study of the effects of geographical environment on the emotions and behavior of individuals, has captivated other writers including W. G. Sebald and Peter Ackroyd, but Self and Steadman have their own unique spin on how place shapes people and vice versa.
 

About Will Self

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\Will Self is the acclaimed author of such books as The Quantity Theory of Insanity, Great Apes, How the Dead Live, and The Book of Dave. He won the Geoffrey Faber Memorial Prize and was short listed for the Whitbread. He lives in London. Ralph Steadman is an award-winning cartoonist and illustrator. Renowned as a political and social satirist, he has collaborated with Hunter S. Thompson, illustrated classics such as Alice in Wonderland, Treasure Island, and Animal Farm, and published his own books, including Doodaaa and the memoir, The Joke's Over. They both live in London.
 
Published January 31, 2013 by Bloomsbury Paperbacks. 256 pages
Genres: Political & Social Sciences, Travel, Literature & Fiction, Law & Philosophy, Education & Reference, Professional & Technical. Non-fiction

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Kirkus Reviews

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He shapes a gestalt “compounded of place, progress and Weltanschauung,” finding umbilical linkages between distant and unique places: Gaudí’s La Sagrada Familia strikes him as the Lolita of sacred architecture.

Nov 01 2007 | Read Full Review of Psychogeography: Disentanglin...

The New York Times

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He’s taken to long-distance walking “as a means of dissolving the mechanized matrix which compresses the space-time continuum, and decouples human from physical geography.” He writes, for example, of walking the final 22 miles to a coastal town for his publisher’s sales conference and disrupting ...

Dec 23 2007 | Read Full Review of Psychogeography: Disentanglin...

The Guardian

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When Self caricatured his father's dated, establishment way of talking - "Put on your jerkin, Will, I'm going to take you to Muswell Hill to buy some dancing pumps" - the chair, Kevin Jackson, asked how his own sons were likely to regard him.

Feb 16 2008 | Read Full Review of Psychogeography: Disentanglin...

New York Journal of Books

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Beginning with the long prologue, “Walking to New York,” which chronicles the author’s journey on foot from south London to New York’s lower east side, Self details his opinion of what it is to be a psychogeographer, “a local historian with an attitude problem.” The idea is that he, and others of...

Oct 30 2007 | Read Full Review of Psychogeography: Disentanglin...

San Francisco Chronicle

Novelist Will Self found walking the way others find methadone or God or coffee and cigarettes: by giving up recreational intoxicants that had gotten the better of him.

Nov 25 2007 | Read Full Review of Psychogeography: Disentanglin...

About.com

How Self and Steadman found each other remains a mystery, but Steadman's art complements Self's ramblings as well as it did Hunter S.

| Read Full Review of Psychogeography: Disentanglin...

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