Staff Pick

Nathan Jurgenson’s The Social Photo clears the air of the many easy assumptions we make about social media. Jurgenson’s “social photo” is just that—the photography that get posted on Facebook or Instagram, ready to be seen by a plethora of followers. These photos, Jurgenson argues, should be treated as part of a new social process rather than artistic objects. Our feeds are fluid. Photos come and go, getting thumbed through, in a state of transience rather than remembrance. Jurgenson defends the selfie, praising its presentation of intimate, if not embarrassing, moments. The Social Photo is not a book of art criticism. Its expansive reach will be interesting for anyone trying to get a sense of what social media is doing to us.

The Social Photo: On Photography and Social Media Cover Image
$19.95
ISBN: 9781788730914
Availability: In Stock—Click for Locations
Published: Verso - April 30th, 2019

Staff Pick

César Aira, at the age of 70, has written over 100 books. How does he do it? Birthday perhaps, answers that question: he keeps getting older. His titular birthday passes with little fanfare. Life clocks one banal routine after the other before unexpectedly spiraling out of control, and not because time is ticking away. Instead, Aira’s world gets rocked by a misconception about the moon—namely, that its phases are caused by the earth’s shadow rather than its position relative to the earth and sun. How could such an enlightened, intelligent man have missed such an elementary fact? Has his writerly career been premised, indeed, existed on similar falsities?   Reading Aira at his funniest (and this novel is up there for him) feels like the most joyous, guiltiest pleasure. Like eating cake till it hurts. Genre: philosophical diatribe disguised as memoir; a novel in the service of critiquing itself. 

Birthday Cover Image
By Cesar Aira, Chris Andrews (Translator)
$13.95
ISBN: 9780811219099
Availability: In Stock—Click for Locations
Published: New Directions Publishing Corporation - February 26th, 2019