Disasters

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Stormy Weather: on Andrew Durbin’s MacArthur Park by Evan Moffitt
Andrew Durbin Book 01

A globe-hopping novel ruminates on drift and disaster.

Fast & Loose by Kyle Paoletta
Jean Echenoz 01

Earthquakes, rain of blood, and other fun things in Jean Echenoz’s We Three

The Imagination of Disaster by Andrew Durbin

On the second anniversary of the day Hurricane Sandy made landfall in New York, Klaus Biesenbach, the director of MoMA PS1, posted an image of the Statue of Liberty overrun by a tidal wave from the disaster movie The Day After Tomorrow to his Instagram, writing: “2 years ago #Sandy hit making clear how vulnerable the city is.”

Ryan Foerster by Ashley McNelis
Ryan Foerster Bomb 1

“If this is what this material does now, just treat it as a positive thing.“

California, Failed Experiment by J.W. McCormack
Claire Vaye Watkins 1

The title of Claire Vaye Watkins’s first novel, Gold Fame Citrus, names just three of California’s historic exports. It’s a list to which, just for fun, we might add surfing, In-N-Out Burger, health fads, The Doors, cults, and—at least lately—post-apocalyptic novels.

Charlie Victor Romeo by Gary M. Kramer
Charlie Victor Romeo 1

Transcripts, technical language, and airline disasters.

Jesmyn Ward by Rebecca Keith
​Jesmyn Ward

Rebecca Keith speaks with author Jesmyn Ward about her National Book Award-winning novel Salvage the Bones.

September 11, 2001 (Please Stop Saying 9/11) by Nick Stillman
Christopher Saucedo 01

Nick Stillman points to Christopher Saucedo’s September 11, 2001 (Please Stop Saying 9/11) as an example of artistic retrospective through portraiture and branding.

2001 by Sabine Russ
​Wolfgang Staehle 01

Sabine Russ maps Wolfgang Staehle’s 2001 onto 2011, tracing the painful and cathartic implications of its memory.

Jim Shepard by Christie Hodgen
Jim Shepard

In the ambitious stories in Shepard’s latest collection, You Think That’s Bad, psychological insight is derived from the characters’ exposure to extreme duress. Shepard discusses his short stories with fiction writer Christie Hodgen.

The Color of Night by Madison Smartt Bell

This First Proof contains an excerpt from The Color of Night, by Madison Smartt Bell.

Thomas Hirschhorn by Abraham Cruzvillegas
Hirschhorn 01

Hirschhorn’s site-specific, hyper-saturated installations enjoy what he calls “wastefulness as a tool or weapon.”

Fiction for Driving: The Color of Night by Madison Smartt Bell
Madison Smartt Bell

Listen to Madison Smartt Bell reading from his novel The Color of Night in the eleventh installment in BOMB’s literary podcast series, originally published in BOMB 115.

Rebecca Solnit by Astra Taylor
Rebecca Solnit

Filmmaker Taylor delves into Solnit’s book, A Paradise Built in Hell: The Extraordinary Communities that Arise in Disaster, where the preconceptions of human nature are exposed and the triumphs of civil society are extolled.

Fiction for Driving Across America: Herb and Rosalie Swanson at the Cocoanut Grove by Peter Orner

In the first installment in BOMB’s Fiction for Driving Across America series, Peter Orner reads his short story “Herb and Rosalie Swanson at the Cocoanut Grove,” published in BOMB 103’s literary supplement, First Proof.

Afterword to the play Alice Invents a Little Game and Alice Always Wins by Nick Flynn

When asked what his plays were about, Harold Pinter once famously and facetiously replied that they were all about “the weasel under the cocktail cabinet.”

Herb and Rosalie Swanson at the Cocoanut Grove by Peter Orner

Two decades after it happened Herb Swanson began to tell it at dinner parties. 

The Zero Meter Diving Team by Jim Shepard

Here’s what it’s like to bear up under the burden of so much guilt: everywhere you drag yourself you leave a trail. Late at night, you gaze back and view an upsetting record of where you’ve been.

Scrapbook by Sheila Bosworth
Robert Polidori 001 BOMB 97

“All I want is to see where I’m going next.”
—Amy Hempel, Tumble Home

Robert Polidori’s After the Flood by T.R. Johnson
Robert Polidori 1

I’ve lived in the Ninth Ward of New Orleans for six years, and I might live here the rest of my life. 

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