The White Album

Essay by ジョーン・ディディオン


The White Album is a 1979 book of essays by Joan Didion. Like her previous book Slouching Towards Bethlehem, The White Album is a collection of works previously published in magazines such as Life and Esquire. The subjects of the essays range widely and represent a mixture of memoir, criticism, and journalism, focusing on the history and politics of California in the late 1960s and early 70s. With the publication of The White Album, Didion had established herself as a prominent writer on Californian culture. As one contemporary reviewer stated, "California belongs to Joan Didion."
The title of the book comes from its first essay, "The White Album," which was chosen as one of the 10 most important essays since 1950 by Publishers Weekly. The opening sentence of this essay—"We tell ourselves stories in order to live"—would become one of Didion's best-known sayings, and was used as the title of a 2006 collection of Didion's nonfiction.

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