Zadie Smith On Manhattan's 'Sociopathic' Ambition

October 10, 2014 3:39 PM

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Zadie Smith On Manhattan's 'Sociopathic' Ambition

The essay about saying goodbye to New York City is practically a literary subgenre unto itself. It revolves around some common tropes: Early intoxication with the city's charms, exhausting and anxiety-ridden attempts to "make it," and the eventual conclusion that, at a certain point, the endeavor is simply not worth it. As Joan Didion wrote in 1967 of her decision to leave New York City for the West Coast, "It is distinctly possible to stay too long at the Fair."

In a new essay for the New York Review of Books, "Find Your Beach," Zadie Smith chimes in on the "New York I Love You But You're Bringing Me Down" conversation, revisiting some familiar themes on the anxiety of making it in Manhattan, and on the changing landscape of a city that was once a cultural ...

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