Friday, November 16, 2012

Political Fictions - Joan Didion

Joan Didion’s Political Fictions is necessarily dated, as it covers American politics in the late eighties to the early 90s.  This does not take away from the pleasure of reading this book, however.  Didion takes her keen analytic skills and shrewd powers of observation and makes them work on this topic as well as any other.

We learn that she is not a big fan of Bill Clinton, but defends him against the political witch hunt of the Starr investigation and his impeachment trial.  She actually has the stomach to brave New Gingrich’s writings, exposing him for the bizarre, pseudo-intellectual that he is, a the beholder of strange ideas and bizarre causative theories.  She attacks Bob Woodward’s reporting style as little more than the amassing of factual details, without a point of view (she more of less call him an political sycophant).  

In all, this collection has bite and wit, and is a great window on its era and the characters that inhabited it.

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