Announcement: More on the Midwest; Malcolm Harris Book Event
I wish every reader a happy Wednesday, and to my Christian readers, a productively mournful Ash Wednesday and Lent season. Two quick announcements. One, my review of Jon K. Lauck’s history of the nineteenth-century Midwest is up at New Republic, where it benefits immeasurably from the editorial interventions of Laura Marsh. (I’m not being ironic; she made it a lot better.) I am critical of the book in ways that anyone who’s read a bit of JKL and a bit of me could more or less predict; I wish there were an artful and unexpected way around that, but sometimes there isn’t one. Equally, I hope readers won’t take my opening encomium to Lauck’s work as me being merely politic. I put myself in debt to him, among other historians, when I wrote Midwest Futures, and if I couldn’t pay off that debt this time around by writing a rave, it doesn’t make the debt less real.
This evening, I’m interviewing a historian of a totally different bent, Malcolm Harris, whose Palo Alto: A History of Capitalism, California, and the World is … honestly a pretty stunning book. More personal and impassioned than the title would lead one to expect, and massively informative. The event is sponsored by Literati Bookstore here in town, but it’s on Zoom. 7PM EST if you’d like to drop in: https://www.literatibookstore.com/event/home-literati-malcolm-harris