Michael Herr

"Why's this so good?" No. 61: John McPhee and the archdruid

By Why's this so good? October 2, 2012

The New Journalism of the 1960s and 1970s – by Tom Wolfe, Hunter Thompson, and others – made the biggest collective splash in recent American nonfiction, and certainly enlarged our idea of what the genre could do. The best of it may endure, but, 50 or 100 years from now, will people still be enthralled by Thompson’s psychedelic ramblings or the early Wolfe’s strings of italics and exclamation marks? More lasting, I think, as a grand pointillist mural of our time and place as expressed in the lives of an encyclopedic range of people, will be the work of John McPhee. Read more

"What's on your syllabus?"

By #longreads September 20, 2012

Every narrative journalist can point to a story or a book, or two, that changed their lives, and that made them want to tell true stories. What story does it for you? Where was your love born? When we asked about … Read more