How Tom Wolfe Helped Create New Journalism

– David Browne, "How Tom Wolfe Helped Create New Journalism," Rolling Stone, June 8, 2017.
Excerpt: In the mid-1960s, the acid tests thrown by Ken Kesey and his Merry Pranksters were the white-hot center of the psychedelic revolution: dusk-to-dawn parties, usually in the Bay Area, that brought together freaks and Hells Angels, offered free LSD in… More

We’re Only Human

– Andrew Ferguson, Commentary, October 2016.
Excerpt: The Kingdom of Speech is popular intellectual history of the most exhilarating kind. Its closest antecedents came along nearly 40 years ago, both of them also by Wolfe. The Painted Word laid waste the world of abstract art, and From Bauhaus to Our… More

My Father, the Provocateur

– Alexandra Wolfe, "My Father, the Provocateur," Wall Street Journal, September 1, 2016.
Alexandra Wolfe writes: Yes, at some point in interviewing my father, I probably say “Daaaaaaaaaaaaaad!!!”—and he’d style it just that way if he were writing about our chat himself. Tom Wolfe loves to have characters reveal themselves with that sort… More

Saved From The Bonfire: The Tom Wolfe Papers

– Oliver Wiseman, Standpoint, November 2015.
Excerpt: Sift through the Tom Wolfe papers and you get a picture of a writer who, from Sixties hippies to Eighties “masters of the universe”, has been a correspondent on the frontline of American society, reporting on its changes, its absurdities and its… More

Mizzou and the Master of Our Universe

– Matthew Continetti, Washington Free Beacon, November 13, 2015.
Excerpt: The temptation to dismiss Wolfe as a mere gadfly or ironist or stylist has been around for a while. Resist it. He is not only a bestselling author but a thinker of originality and power. How to describe his philosophy? Begin with Darwin, add some… More

How Tom Wolfe Became Tom Wolfe

– Michael Lewis, Vanity Fair, November 2015.
Excerpt: The documents tell the story of the leading journalistic observer and describer of American life, in a time of radical cultural transformation, and of the sensational explosion in American literary journalism that occurred in the late 1960s and… More

A Woman in Full by Michael Anton

– Michael Anton, Claremont Review of Books, Spring 2015.
Excerpt: Wolfe tells unwelcome truths about race, multiculturalism, modern art, masculinity, and much else. At least these get noticed. His heterodox insights on women have been entirely ignored, unseen behind the repeated insistence that he is unable “to… More

Tom Wolfe Looks Over His Notes

The New Yorker, February 25, 2015.
“They’re calling it an archive,” Tom Wolfe points out. “It makes me feel very important.” Wolfe is standing next to an exhibit of his papers at the New York Public Library. In 2013, the library paid just over two million dollars for… More

From ‘Acid’ to ‘Bonfire,’ an Archive That Sizzles

– Jennifer Schuessler, New York Times, May 20, 2014.
Excerpt: In March 1988, when Tom Wolfe’s “The Bonfire of the Vanities” was parked at the top of the best-seller list, 962 Fifth Avenue was known to seemingly everyone as the gilded home of the mistress of Sherman McCoy, the book’s high-living… More

The Bizarre and Jejune

– George Neumayr, The American Spectator, January 2014.
Excerpt: At 82, Tom Wolfe stands as one of America’s most venerable writers. Over a 50-year career, which began with an obscure reporting job he took as a break from his Ph.D. work in American Studies at Yale University, he has produced a steady stream of… More

Tom Wolfe’s Miami

– Peter Berkowitz, Policy Review, February/March 2013.
Excerpt: In 2012, both presidential candidates agreed that America is a divided nation. In private remarks to wealthy donors in May that were secretly taped and released to devastating political effect in September, Mitt Romney declared that 47% of Americans… More

Miami Vise: A Cuban-American cop gets caught in a web of allegiances

– Review of Back to Blood. Brian Murray, The Weekly Standard, December 3, 2012.
It’s been almost 25 years since Tom Wolfe issued a call for “the new social novel.” His 1989 manifesto, “Stalking the Billion-Footed Beast,” argued that, since the end of the Second World War, American novelists had lost their way, having convinced… More

‘Things You Never Thought Possible’

– Review of Back to Blood. Nathaniel Rich, The New York Review of Books, November 22, 2012.
The writers of Tom Wolfe’s generation who discovered Miami before him—writers whose careers began in the era of the Cuban Revolution and the Bay of Pigs—described Miami as the nerve center of America’s secret history. In the late 1980s, Joan Didion… More

The Right Wolfe

– Andrew Ferguson, Commentary, November 2012.
Excerpt: I was pulled up short the other day while reading an interview with Charles Portis, author of True Grit and other (equally splendid) novels. Portis worked as a reporter for the New York Herald Tribune in the early- to mid-60s, when it served as an… More

Muscle-Bound: Tom Wolfe’s “Back to Blood”

– James Wood, The New Yorker, October 15, 2012.
Tom Wolfe writes Big and Tall Prose—big subjects, big people, and yards of flapping exaggeration. No one of average size emerges from his shop; in fact, no real human variety can be found in his fiction, because everyone has the same enormous excitability.… More

Tom Wolfe’s California

– Michael Anton, City Journal, Autumn 2012.
Excerpt: Tom Wolfe is most identified with New York City, for good reason. He has lived and worked in Manhattan since the early 1960s, and New York dominates his writing the way London looms for Dickens. But Wolfe has never been afraid to venture from his… More

A Critic in Full

– Carol Ianonne, National Association of Scholars, August 11, 2008.
Excerpt: Iannone: Today is February 28, 2008, and we are privileged to begin a conversation with Mr. Tom Wolfe. I want to start by saying how impressed I was by your novel, I Am Charlotte Simmons. I can’t believe how much of the contemporary university you… More

Radical Un-chic

– James Panero, The New Criterion, December 2007.
Excerpt: Pablo Picasso was a fraud. So says Tom Wolfe, who does not like Picasso. This much was becoming clear. Picasso, according to Wolfe, “left school just before they taught perspective.” He had to shroud his backgrounds in “fog.” He was a sorry… More

Q&A: Tom Wolfe

– Mark Binelli, Rolling Stone, May 3, 2007.
The author reflects on his past, God and society.

Capturing the “Mad Hulking Carnival” of American Life

– Marc Weingarten, Humanities, May/June 2006.
Summary: The article offers information on the career of Tom Wolfe. He started as a writer for the “New York Herald Tribune.” From the start of his writing career, Wolfe realized that facts do not reveal everything and behavior is just as… More

Cry Wolfe

– Mark Bowden, The Atlantic, April 2006.
Excerpt: In one of many deft set pieces in Tom Wolfe’s I Am Charlotte Simmons, a group of student journalists at the fictional Dupont University hold a meeting in the “lumpen-bohemian clutter” of their campus newsroom. The editor wants a… More

Status Reporter by Joseph Rago

– Joseph Rago, Wall Street Journal, March 11, 2006.
Excerpt: Tom Wolfe is a spry fellow, arch and gently convivial in his well-appointed Manhattan apartment. He is dressed precisely as you would expect him to be. Of course, this points up — suits, you might say — the larger predicament: Is there… More

Big Man on Campus

– Michael Anton, Claremont Review of Books, September 2005.
Excerpt: I am Charlotte Simmons hit the shelves one week after the 2004 election, just in time to explain to perplexed blue-staters what people in flyover country are really like, and to confirm Red America’s worst fears about what really goes on way… More

The genesis of gonzo

– Marc Weingarten, The Guardian, September 2, 2005.
It was a story meeting to generate some provocative ideas for New York, the Sunday supplement of the New York Herald Tribune. Clay Felker, the magazine’s editor, had mentioned that the New Yorker, great literary magazine of his youth, had become deadly… More

He is Charlotte Simmons

– Peter Berkowitz, Policy Review, February/March 2005.
Excerpt: How little the radicalness of the sexual revolution has been appreciated and how much questioning its consequences is deemed bad manners or worse has been amply demonstrated by the smugness with which many of the first wave of reviewers have… More

Pictures from an Institution

– Review of I Am Charlotte Simmons. Daniel Mendelsohn, The New York Review of Books, December 16, 2004.
Two unrelated items from The New York Times of Tuesday, November 9, 2004, direct our attention to crises in American higher education. The first, which appears on page A16 of the national section, is grim. Entitled “Drinking Deaths Draw Attention to Old… More

Peeping Tom

– Review of I am Charlotte Simmons. Jacob Weisberg, New York Times, November 28, 2004.
It’s hard to imagine a tougher assignment for an aging journalist than explaining undergraduate life at a big American university. The project is not hard in the ways Tom Wolfe’s other subjects have been hard. It’s not technical, like space… More

School Days: Tom Wolfe pens an undergraduate novel

– Review of I Am Charlotte Simmons. Joseph Bottum, The Weekly Standard, November 22, 2004.
TOM WOLFE is America’s greatest living novelist. Kind of. Lord knows, he’s got the tools. Is there any author who understands the social meaning of clothes, cars, glasses, words–even the way that people sit and stand–better than Wolfe?… More

I am Still Tom Wolfe

– Lev Grossman, Time, November 8, 2004.
In 1952 a promising young pitching prospect out of Washington and Lee University showed up for a tryout with the New York Giants (the baseball Giants, that is–they hadn’t yet decamped for San Francisco). The prospect made a decent showing: three… More

An Undergrad in Full

– Harvey Mansfield, Wall Street Journal, November 5, 2004.
Excerpt: Tom Wolfe was of course known as a social satirist long before he became the novelist we know today. One thinks, for instance, of “The Intelligent Coed’s Guide to America.” It includes a section in which Mr. Wolfe describes being on… More

Wolfe’s World

– Charles McGrath, New York Times Magazine, October 31, 2004.
Excerpt: Could these be the wheels of Tom Wolfe, 74-year-old novelist and former ”new journalist,” who at this very moment is holed up here in a rented house, same one he has rented for more than two decades . . . couldn’t he afford one of… More

So Where’s the Zeitgeist? It Looks Just Like College

– Review of I Am Charlotte Simmons. Michiko Kakutani, New York Times, October 29, 2004.
In a famous and much contested 1989 literary manifesto, Tom Wolfe called upon novelists to head “out into this wild, bizarre, unpredictable, hog-stomping Baroque country of ours and reclaim it as literary property.” He exhorted “a battalion,… More

Lone Wolfe by Michael Anton

– Michael Anton, Claremont Review of Books, February 2001.
Excerpt: Tom Wolfe has been on a lonely crusade for more than a decade. His repeated calls for a return to realism in American fiction have largely gone unanswered. Makes you wonder. Thirteen years ago, after a 25-year career as one of the most prominent, and… More

Caught in the Curve

– Review of Hooking Up. Benjamin DeMott, The New York Review of Books, February 8, 2001.
The title piece in Tom Wolfe’s latest collection looks back jeeringly, from a not very distant tomorrow, on today’s American costumes, affluence, and linguistic, intellectual, and sexual behavior. There’s an account of the life of the “average… More

Review of Hooking Up

– Midge Decter, Commentary, January 2001.
Excerpt: All of which lends a certain extraneous interest to Hooking Up, a hodgepodge of articles and essays written on various topics with varying degrees of seriousness and aplomb and put together with the air of having been cleared off Wolfe’s desk to… More

The Man in White

– Review of Hooking Up. Maureen Dowd, New York Times, November 5, 2000.
I love Tom Wolfe. Maybe too much. Whenever some big bizarro thing happens in what he calls ”the lurid carnival actually taking place in the mightiest country on earth in the year 2000,” I want him to give it his electric Kool-Aid acid test. I want… More

In Wolfe’s Clothing

– Gail Caldwell, Boston Globe, October 29, 2000.
Excerpt: Wherever Tom Wolfe belongs in the pantheon of American letters, the man does know how to let the air out of a tire. Half vandal and half raconteur, he can deflate an entire city block of egos without getting winded — managing, in the meantime,… More

Both a Social Pointillist and a Cultural Partisan

– Review of Hooking Up. Michiko Kakutani, New York Times, October 27, 2000.
The reader of the new Tom Wolfe anthology, ”Hooking Up,” comes away with three impressions: that Mr. Wolfe is a keen observer and stylist, using his magnetic eye for social details and high-caloric prose to energize his reportage; that he employs… More

Tom Wolfe

– Cary Tennis,, February 1, 2000.
Tom Wolfe had been working at the New York Herald Tribune only six months when the newspaper strike of 1963 put him temporarily out of a job. He didn’t know it then, but he was about to change the course of American journalism. All he knew was that he… More

Who’s Afraid of Tom Wolfe?

– Mary Ann Glendon, First Things, August 1999.
Excerpt: Why does Tom Wolfe’s latest book make the mandarins of taste so uncomfortable? John Updike took a good deal of space in the New Yorker to declare that A Man in Full was “entertainment, not literature.” Norman Mailer in the New York Review of… More

God and Man in Full by P.J. O’Rourke

– P. J. O'Rourke, Policy Review, April/May 1999.
Excerpt: Among the A-list big dogs of chic fiction, Tom Wolfe’s A Man in Full is not da bomb. Of course, there’s vulgar success against it — cover of Time, phone number first printing. Nothing ills the cool like being hot, except on the rare occasions… More

Review of A Man in Full

– Christopher Caldwell, Commentary, February 1999.
Excerpt: Wolfe’s second best-selling novel, A Man in Full, is intended to serve as another such work of reclamation. It is the story of sixty-year-old Charlie Croker, an under-educated ex-college-football star who has developed much of the skyline of… More

A Man Half Full

– Review of A Man in Full. Norman Mailer, The New York Review of Books, December 17, 1998.
…Three cheers. One has to applaud his moxie. Only an innocent or a simpleton could fail to recognize that a live hornet was being deposited in the crevice of every literary seat in town. If The Bonfire of the Vanities had excited envy and outrage, Wolfe… More

A Snubbed Tom Wolfe Parries With 2 Men of Letters

– Martin Arnold, New York Times, December 10, 1998.
From where did all this fury come? Could it simply be that two of the most celebrated literary icons of our time, Norman Mailer and John Updike, are jealous of Tom Wolfe? In their reviews, both authors struggled mightily and not with tender heart to establish… More

In His New Novel, Tom Wolfe Unearths His Southern Roots

– Peter Applebome, New York Times, November 11, 1998.
NEW YORK — There was a moment after the salmon with Brittany sea salt at the pillowy corner banquette at the Carlyle, after the triumphant stroll up Madison Avenue, where East Side matrons swooned like teen-agers spying Leonardo DiCaprio, after the… More

Review of “A Man in Full”

– Michael Lewis, New York Times, November 8, 1998.
In the Norton Simon Museum, in Pasadena, Calif., there hangs a self-portrait of the 18th-century French painter Maurice Quentin de La Tour. The artist wears an expression of intense self-satisfaction and the foppish attire of the flaneur. Just below him is a… More

Wolfe Turns “The Bonfire” Upside Down

– Review of A Man in Full. Michiko Kakutani, New York Times, October 28, 1998.
While Tom Wolfe’s first novel, ”The Bonfire of the Vanities” (1987), gave us a satiric portrait of New York in the giddy go-go years of the 1980’s — those heady years when bond salesmen could think of themselves as ”Masters… More

New Novel to be Acid Test for Booksellers

– Doreen Carvajal, New York Times, June 1, 1998.
CHICAGO, May 31 — Hey! It’s Tom Wolfe! Star of true fiction, college anthologies and New York literati. From the depths of a sleek, black ship of the highway, he enters the McCormack Place convention center in Chicago. He is dressed, of course, in… More

The Death of Sherman McCoy

– Michael Lewis, New York Times Magazine, August 18, 1996.
TO REREAD ”THE Bonfire of the Vanities,” Tom Wolfe’s glittering portrait of 1980’s New York, is to notice that something has changed since its publication nine years ago. In many ways, the book remains a brilliant description of urban… More

Tom Wolfe’s Revenge

– Chris Harvey, American Journalism Review, October 1994.
Excerpt: A few decades ago, feature Óriter Tom Wolfe was pilloried in print for having “the social conscience of an ant” and a “remarkable unconcern” for the facts. Only a visionary could have predicted his impact on journalism would… More

Tom Wolfe, The Art of Fiction No. 123

– Interviewed by George Plimpton, The Paris Review, Spring 1991.
Excerpt: One of Tom Wolfe’s favorite restaurants in New York City is the Isle of Capri on the East Side, specializing, as one might expect, in Italian cuisine; indeed, the menu does not condescend to non-Italian speaking customers: an extensive list of… More

The Flap Over Tom Wolfe: How Real Is The Retreat From Realism?

– Robert Towers, New York Times, January 28, 1990.
I cannot offhand recall an article in a small magazine making a bigger splash in the literary pool than Tom Wolfe’s manifesto, ”Stalking the Billion-Footed Beast,” in the November 1989 issue of Harper’s Magazine. Mr. Wolfe, an old hand… More

Low Expectations

– Review of The Bonfire of  the Vanities. Thomas R. Edwards, The New York Review of Books, February 4, 1988.
Authors are not responsible for what even their friendliest critics say about them, and Tom Wolfe shouldn’t be blamed for George Will’s statement that Wolfe’s first novel,The Bonfire of the Vanities, is “Victorian, even Dickensian” in its scope and… More

Urban Rats in Fashion’s Maze

– Review of The Bonfire of the Vanities. Frank Conroy, New York Times, November 1, 1987.
Now comes Tom Wolfe, aging enfant terrible, with his first novel, (his first novel!), six hundred and fifty-nine pages of raw energy about New York City and various of its inhabitants – a big, bitter, funny, craftily plotted book that grabs you by the… More

Tom Wolfe Tries New Role: Novelist

– Mervyn Rothstein, New York Times, October 13, 1987.
“It’s outrageous the way people conduct their lives in New York,” Tom Wolfe said. ”And yet I don’t want to live anywhere else. I don’t despair, because I find the comedy so rich. At the same time that people do vile things,… More

The Wrong Stuff: Review of “The Purple Decades”

– Christopher Hitchens, London Review of Books, April 1983.
“Wolfe had the excellent idea, way back when, of being in the Sixties but not quite of them. His idea of participation was to appear, but to appear detached. The formula caught and held a whole imitative school of lycanthropic scribblers, who could mock… More

The Right Stuff

– Douglas A. Jeffrey, Claremont Review of Books, Winter 1983.
Excerpt: The right stuff is something that those who have it recognize in one another but do not and perhaps cannot speak of. More than expertise and more than daring, the right stuff is courage. The question raised by Tom Wolfe’s book, The Right… More

Tom Wolfe’s Greatest Hits

– Review of The Purple Decades: A Reader. James Wolcott, The New York Review of Books, November 4, 1982.
Not since Garry Wills uncorked his rather fanciful notions on the origins of the cold war in the opening pages of Lillian Hellman’s Scoundrel Time has a book been so fatefully torpedoed by its own introduction. Subtitled “A Reader,” The Purple… More

Review of “The Purple Decades”

– Paul Fussell, New York Times, October 10, 1982.
Here’s almost 20 years of Tom Wolfe’s electric prose, 20 classic pieces, including ”The Pump House Gang” (California surfers and their culture), ”The Last American Hero” (Junior Johnson, Southern moonshine delivery driver… More

Wolfe in Wolfe’s Clothing

– Review of From Bauhaus to Our House. Janet Malcolm, The New York Review of Books, December 17, 1981.
“I’ve got Europe off my back. You’ve no idea how it simplifies things and how jolly it makes me feel. Now I can live, now I can walk. If we wretched Americans could only say once for all, ‘Oh, Europe be hanged!’ we would attend much better to our… More

Review of “From Bauhaus to Our House”

– Paul Goldberger, New York Times, October 11, 1981.
There is almost no one who is not bewildered by the events of the last two decades in architecture. Sleek modern buildings go up, covering more and more of the landscape with glass and aluminum and steel and concrete, as ornate buildings of stone go down to… More

Tom Wolfe: The Rolling Stone Interview

– Chet Flippo, Rolling Stone, August 21, 1980.
Thomas K. Wolfe Jr., now forty-nine, was an extremely unlikely candidate to be the writer who would happen along in the Sixties and propel American journalism into a new realism that would become known and worshiped and vilified as the New Journalism. Wolfe… More

Hog Heaven

– Review of The Right Stuff. John Gregory Dunne, The New York Review of Books, November 8, 1979.
Class has always been Tom Wolfe’s subject, and I suspect the reason for much of the disfavor in which he is held. In what purports to be an egalitarian society, the existence of class is the secret about which no one speaks. Class indeed was the… More

Review of “The Right Stuff”

– C.D.B. Bryan, New York Times, September 23, 1979.
“As to just what this ineffable quality was. . .well, it obviously involved bravery. But it was not bravery in the simple sense of being willing to risk your life. . .any fool could do that. . . . No, the idea. . .seemed to be that a man should have the… More

Imprisoned in the Sixties

– Review of Mauve Gloves & Madmen, Clutter, and Vine, by Tom Wolfe, and Winners and Losers: Battles, Retreats, Gains, Losses and Ruins from a Long War, by Gloria Emerson. Gary Willis, New York Review of Books, January 20, 1977.
The Vietnam war returns in these books, not to haunt us but to amuse. Everyone who touches that war gets tarbabyized by it. Gloria Emerson manages to trivialize by her very concern. She feels it her duty to be outraged that a perfume is now called… More

Review of “Mauve Gloves & Madmen, Clutter & Vine”

– Thomas B. Hess, New York Times, December 26, 1976.
Ten years ago, Tom Wolfe was a dazzling young writer with a noisy nosey style. Snap, popple, crack went the champion adverbs. Bop, bop, bop, responded the topical tropes. He could be witty. You would laugh aloud at some flight in each of Wolfe’s pieces,… More


– Review of The Painted Word. Barbara Rose, The New York Review of Books, June 26, 1975.
In the spring of 1965, Tom Wolfe, a young writer with a growing reputation for a flamboyant wardrobe and an equally flamboyant prose style, met Marshall McLuhan, a Canadian professor with an idea whose time had come. Normally condescending, Wolfe found much… More

Lost in Culture Gulch

– Robert Hughes, Time, June 23, 1975.
Over the past ten years, Tom Wolfe has set himself up as the Bugs Bunny of American journalism—a squeaky, impudent dandy with a glib eye for the lumbering victim. Toward the end of the ’60s, New York appeared to be strewn with his targets, from rich… More

A Curse on the Theoreticians

– Review of The Painted Word. Christopher Lehmann-Haupt, New York Times, May 27, 1975.
One can imagine Tom Wolfe doing his number on Albert Einstein. The slightly absent-minded appearance of the young physicist in Bern. (Doubtless Mr. Wolfe would come up with an absurdly minute catalogue to identify the style and sources of the rumpled… More

Review of “The New Journalism”

– Michael Wood, New York Times, June 22, 1973.
The title suggests a long essay by Tom Wolfe, accompanied by samples of what the essay is about. What we get are three short Wolfe essays and a Wolfe appendix, adding up to some 49 pages, followed by 339 pages of essays and excerpts. A clear case of the nose… More

Review of Radical Chic and Mau-Mauing the Flak Catchers

– Joseph Epstein, Commentary, March 1971.
Excerpt: The Leonard Bernsteins’ evening with the Black Panthers was not an event parallel to the draining away of moral authority in the French monarchy under Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette during the last days of the ancien régime. Nor was it in any way… More

Journal du Voyeur

– Review of Radical Chic and Mau-Mauing the Flak Catchers. Jason Epstein, The New York Review of Books, December 17, 1970.
On April 2, 1969, twenty-one Black Panthers were indicted in New York for having plotted to bomb the Botanical Gardens, a police station, and several retail stores, including Alexander’s and Abercrombie and Fitch. According to District Attorney Hogan, these… More

Tom Wolfe at the Crossroad

– Review of Radical Chic & Mau-Mauing the Flak Catchers. Christopher Lehmann-Haupt, New York Times, November 25, 1970.
As everybody knows, a large part of Tom Wolfe’s “Radical Chic & Mau-Mauing the Flak Catchers” appeared in New York Magazine last spring. At the time it seemed the last word on the Leonard Bernstein-Black Panther kaffeeklatsch affair, so… More

Dr. Pop

– Review of The Pump House Gang and The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test. Margot Hentoff, The New York Review of Books, August 22, 1968.
Sometime during the early Sixties, trivia caught up with us all. Until then, informed awareness of the trifling or the grossly popular had been the mark of the young, hip anti-academics who, having been nurtured on comic books, soap operas, bad movies, and… More

The SAME Day: heeeeeewack!!!

– Review of The Pump House Gang and The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test. C.D.B. Bryan, New York Times, August 18, 1968.
Tom Wolfe’s first book, “The Kandy-Kolored Tangerine-Flake Streamline Baby” was a success when it was published in 1965, not so much because of what he said about publicity-seeking social climbers, stock-car racing drivers, teen-recording… More

Parajournalism II: Wolfe and The New Yorker

– Dwight Macdonald, The New York Review of Books, February 3, 1966.
“Newspapers are only as good as the ideas and information they succeed in conveying. And this means not only putting facts down on paper, but doing so in such a way that they get off the paper and, in a meaningful and orderly fashion, into the minds of the… More

Parajournalism, or Tom Wolfe & His Magic Writing Machine

– Review of The Kandy-Kolored Tangerine-Flake Streamline Baby. Dwight Macdonald, The New York Review of Books, August 26, 1965.
A new kind of journalism is being born, or spawned. It might be called “parajournalism,” from the Greek para, “beside” or “against”: something similar in form but different in function. As in parody, from the parodia, or counter-ode, the satyr… More

In Chic’s Clothing

Time, July 2, 1965.
Pop writing! Op writing! Endless, streaming sentences with lots of dots . . . stretching . . . them out, and plenty of italics and exclamation points break ing them up, and anatomical words like glutei maximi, and funny-paper words like Pow! and crazy brand… More

Review of “The Kandy-Colored Tangerine-Flake Streamline Baby”

– Kurt Vonnegut Jr., New York Times, June 27, 1965.
“Note to the people of Medicine Hat, Alberta, who may not know it: Tom Wolfe is the most exciting–or, at least, the most jangling–journalist to appear in some time. He writes mainly for Esquire and The Herald Tribune. Everybody talks about… More