By Robert S. Boynton
40 years after Tom Wolfe, Hunter S. Thompson, and homosexual Talese introduced the recent Journalism circulation, Robert S. Boynton sits down with nineteen practitioners of what he calls the New New Journalism to debate their tools, writings and careers.
the hot New reporters are in the beginning excellent newshounds who immerse themselves thoroughly of their topics. Jon Krakauer accompanies a hiking day trip to Everest. Ted Conover works for almost a yr as a jail protect. Susan Orlean follows orchid fanciers to bare an obsessive culture few knew existed. Adrian Nicole LeBlanc spends approximately a decade reporting on a relatives within the South Bronx. and prefer their muckraking early twentieth-century precursors, they're attracted to the main urgent problems with the day: Alex Kotlowitz, Leon sprint, and William Finnegan to race and sophistication; Ron Rosenbaum to the matter of evil; Michael Lewis to boom-and-bust economies; Richard Ben Cramer to the nitty gritty of politics. How do they do it? In those interviews, they demonstrate the ideas and inspirations at the back of their acclaimed works, from their felt-tip pens, tape recorders, lengthy motor vehicle rides, and assumed identities; to their intimate realizing of ways a really nice tale unfolds.
Richard Ben Cramer
Adrian Nicole LeBlanc
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Extra resources for The New New Journalism: Conversations with America’s Best Nonfiction Writers on Their Craft
Kramer, Talese, and Trillin are in some ways the “elders” of the movement, writers who have spent their careers alternatively reporting on the extraordinary lives of ordinary people, and the ordinary lives of extraordinary people—Talese’s portraits of Frank Sinatra and Joe DiMaggio being the most famous example of the latter impulse. In an era when the clash of convictions has led to terrorism and war, Lawrence Wright’s writings on belief show why it is important for journalists to suspend their secular biases and examine religious ideas on their own merits.
Traditional journalism was simply not vivid enough to render the extraordinary changes in American life. Some have argued that the literary (or narrative) strand of American journalism was a reaction against the constraints of purely fact-based accounts. 25 Thus the hybrid of the fact-rich, narrative history became a popular American literary genre. “Faced with a new continent full of strange forms of life and potentially useful or threatening mysteries, Americans have always placed a premium on the accurate survey, the reliable report,” writes Preston.
38 Crane’s career has often been used by Wolfe, and others, as evidence that journalism has always been merely the “warm-up” for the novel. But this simply isn’t true in Crane’s case. Crane’s novels preceded his journalism on a subject. 39In this sense, it was fiction that was the warm-up for his extraordinary journalism, not the other way around. Crane’s favorite journalistic form was the closely observed sketch of city life. These sketches—of the poor, of immigrants, of ordinary citizens—drew readers with the unsentimental, artful way he captured his characters and their pedestrian struggles.
The New New Journalism: Conversations with America’s Best Nonfiction Writers on Their Craft by Robert S. Boynton