I’m a day late to the “Reading for Pleasure Wednesday” meme suggested by Dr. Crazy and also seen at George’s place, but because I’ve only briefly mentioned two of my summer reading books, I thought I’d mention them again. My picks risk bending Dr. Crazy’s rules to some extent because I originally picked up both of them for their unique approach to documentary, a subject that’s important for my research interests, but both books also have proven meaningful to me in ways that ultimately have little to do with my scholarship. Plus, it’s a really cool idea and many of the books suggested by other bloggers will now find their way to my reading for pleasure list.
The first is Joe Sacco’s 1995 graphic novel “documentary,” Palestine , which seeks to represent the Israel-Palestine conflict from the perspective of the Palestinians, a perspective we rarely see in the US media. I read Palestine about a month ago, well before Israel and Hezbollah began fighting again, but Sacco’s intelligent, insightful attempt to represent a myriad of Palestinian experiences is truly illuminating (as is Edward Said’s thoughtful foreword).
Also worth checking out: Margaret Sartor’s Miss American Pie: A Diary of Love, Secrets, and Growing Up in the 1970s,, a compliation of diary entries Sartor wrote as a teenager while growing up in Louisiana I first learned about through Duke University’s Center for Documentary Studies. My initial attraction to the book grew out of my interest in memoir, autobiography, and popular culture, but the book grew into a more pleasurable reading experience, one that benefits from Sartor’s careful crafting of these journals into a larger narrative (and one that seemed to comment on my own experiences of growing up in another part of the south about a decade later). Both books are relatively quick reads, especially Sartor’s, which I read in a couple of afternoons.