- Used Books
- Kobo eReading
- Staff Picks
- Gifts & Gift Cards
- Sell Books
- Stores & Events
Special Offers see all
More at Powell's
Recently Viewed clear list
This item may be
Check for Availability
The Last Empire: Essays 1992-2000by Gore Vidal
Synopses & Reviews
<P>A new collection of provocative, witty and eloquent essays by Gore Vidal, the greatest living American man of letters and one of the finest essayists of the twentieth (and twenty-first) century.</P><P><I>The Last Empire</I> is Gore Vidal's ninth collection of essays in the course of his distinguished literary career. As in the previous volumes, which include the 1993 National Book Award-winning <I>United States: Essays 1952-1992,</I> Vidal displays unparalleled range and inimitable style as he deals with matters literary, historical, personal, and political.</P><P>There are warm (and shrewd) appreciations of Edmund Wilson, Dawn Powell, Sinclair Lewis, and Mark Twain; polemical observations on the major figures and (as he sees it) deplorable developments in American politics, Bill Clinton, FDR, JFK, his cousin Al Gore, the CIA and the American empire, the global reach of media conglomerates, and the United States' disdain for the UN, as well as fascinating autobiographical vignettes.</P><P>Pieces that have already generated shock waves include his essay in dispraise of the works of John Updike, his controversial defense of Charles Lindbergh, and his attack on the national security state that first appeared in <I>Vanity Fair.</I></P><P>Nobody makes the fur fly in a more elegant and civilized fashion than Gore Vidal. He is our indispensable man.</P><HR><P>"The American tradition of independent and curious learning is kept alive in the wit and great expressiveness of Gore Vidal's criticism."<BR> CITATION FOR THE 1982 NATIONAL BOOK CRITICS CIRCLE AWARD FOR CRITICISM</P><HR>
"Gore Vidal is the master essayist of our age." The Washington Post Book World
"Lively, instructive, lucid and amusing. Vidal has a carefree touch and a humorous air....[He] can be a marvelous wit." Paul Berman, The New York Times Book Review
In a provocative and witty new anthology of essays, the author of the award-winning United States shares his thoughts on a wide range of literary, historical, political, and personal subjects, from appreciations of Edmund Wilson and Mark Twain to the distressing developments in American politics to autobiographical vignettes. Reprint. 15,000 first printing.
Like his National Book Award—winning United States, Gore Vidals scintillating ninth collection, The Last Empire, affirms his reputation as our most provocative critic and observer of the modern American scene. In the essays collected here, Vidal brings his keen intellect, experience, and razor-edged wit to bear on an astonishing range of subjects. From his celebrated profiles of Clare Boothe Luce and Charles Lindbergh and his controversial essay about the Bill of Rights-which sparked an extended correspondence with convicted Oklahoma City Bomber Timothy McVeigh-to his provocative analyses of literary icons such as John Updike and Mark Twain and his trenchant observations about terrorism, civil liberties, the CIA, Al Gore, Tony Blair, and the Clintons, Vidal weaves a rich tapestry of personal anecdote, critical insight, and historical detail. Written between the first presidential campaign of Bill Clinton and the electoral crisis of 2000, The Last Empire is a sweeping coda to the last centurys conflicted vision of the American dream.
About the Author
Gore Vidal divides his time between Ravello, Italy, and Los Angeles.
From the Trade Paperback edition.
Table of Contents
Edmund Wilson: nineteenth-century man — Dawn Powell: queen of the golden age — Lost New York — The romance of Sinclair Lewis — Twain on the grand tour — Reply to a critic — Twain?s letters — Rabbit?s own burrow — A note on The city and the pillar and Thomas Mann — Anthony Burgess — Pride — Lindbergh: the eagle is grounded — Sinatra — C.P. Cavafy — George — Amistad — FDR: love on the Hudson — Wiretapping the oval office — Clare Boothe Luce — Truman — Hersh?s JFK — Nixon R.I.P. — Clinton-Gore I — Bedfellows make strange politics — Clinton-Gore II — Honorable Albert A. Gore, Junior — Kopkind — Bad history — Blair — How we missed the Saturday dance — The last empire — In the lair of the octopus — With extreme prejudice — Time for a people?s convention — The union of the state — Mickey Mouse, historian — U.S. out of UN-UN out of U.S. — Race against time — Chaos — Shredding the Bill of Rights — The new theocrats — Coup de Starr — Starr conspiracy — Birds and bees and Clinton — A letter to be delivered — Democratic vistas — Three lies to rule by — Japanese intentions in the second World War
What Our Readers Are Saying