From the publisher:
With Attention, Joshua Cohen returns with his first collection of nonfiction, the culmination of two decades of writing and thought about life in the digital age. In essays, memoir, criticism, diary entries, and letters—many appearing here for the first time—Cohen covers the full depth and breadth of modern life: politics, literature, art, music, travel, the media, and psychology, and subjects as diverse as Google, Donald Trump, Bernie Sanders, fictional animals, Gustav Mahler, Aretha Franklin, John Zorn, landscape photography, fake Caravaggios, Wikipedia, Gertrude Stein, Edward Snowden, Jonathan Franzen, Olympic women’s fencing, Atlantic City casinos, the closing of the Ringling Bros. circus, and Azerbaijan. Cohen directs his sharp gaze at home and abroad, calling upon his extraordinary erudition and unrivaled ability to draw connections between seemingly unlike things to show us how to live without fear in a world overflowing with information. At this crucial juncture in history, Attention is a guide for the perplexed—a handbook for anyone hoping to bring the wisdom of the past into the culture of the future.
‘Joshua Cohen has a complex and capacious consciousness.’
— Harold Bloom
‘Cohen, one of our crucial young novelists, has made the non-fiction novel of our moment, formed of a constellation of investigations and inklings. No one’s done such a thing so well since George Trow or Joan Didion or Norman Mailer, if ever. It’s chasteningly brilliant, and the kind of chastening we unfortunately need.’
— Jonathan Lethem, author of The Fortress of Solitude
‘Joshua Cohen is one of my favorite nonfiction writers. This book is a cause for celebration.’
— Elif Batuman, author of The Idiot