You ought to read “Bomb the Suburbs”

This one is a bit of an underground classic. It’s a collection of stories, essays and cultural critiques by Billy Wimsatt, an author, activist and future political organizer from Chicago. You can preview it if you like, courtesy of Google Books.

First published in 1994, the book and its subsequent promotional tour generated a cult following around Wimsatt, which in turn led to future books and left-leaning political projects. The book itself deals with issues like hip hop culture, race, suburban sprawl, graffiti and youth activism. It’s a witty, well-informed and engaging book; I work my way through it every two or three years, and I think I’m about due for another reading.

Wimsatt’s latest is a follow-up called Please Don’t Bomb the Suburbs, in which he looks back on twenty-five years of politics and culture in America, and offers a vision for the twenty-five years ahead. I haven’t read it yet, because I just found out about it, but you can bet it’s in the queue.

Posted in You Ought to Read

2 Responses to “You ought to read “Bomb the Suburbs””

  1. andrew says:

    did you read No More Prisons? i kind of felt it was a little more coherent but not as heartfelt. i had the re-release of Bomb The Suburbs, which suffered from the editing.

    he was also the first author i’d ever read who specifically set out that buying his books and giving them to friends was a way of supporting underground artists. i do actually give away a copy of Bomb The Suburbs every once in a while.

  2. Matt says:

    Yeah, I definitely liked the Soft Skull fundraising model. I did enjoy “No More Prisons” as well, but you’re right; it had a much broader agenda.