An unsupervised trip into a bookshop this week resulted in two more additions to my ever growing pile of unread books on the bedroom carpet next to my bookcase (the poor thing is groaning under the weight of its already over filled shelves and I fear cannot support another paperback being added).
Perry and Dent
The Descent of Man – Grayson Perry
I’ve been a fan of the inimitable Grayson Perry for a number of years, I think perhaps coming most to my attention after I had seen the ‘Imagine… Grayson Perry and the Tomb of the Unknown Craftsman’ episode on the BBC back in 2011. Before that Grayson Perry has been on the fringes of my awareness from my gender studies module at University, which mentioned him in passing after which I’d made a note to look up in detail. Since then I’ve seen a number of his programmes on TV, followed him on Twitter, and listened to as many radio shows he appears on as possible! When I saw he had written a book examining the performance and stereotypes of masculinity, I was really excited, as the discussion of gender roles and their destructive impact has mainly been the domain of female writers and theorists examining femininity. The lens under which we see the harmful impacts of performed and learned gender identities has only recently been applied to masculinity in the same way. I am two pages in, and already enamoured by Perry’s clear and humours writing style. This seems to be such a necessary book, and such an important theme. I’ll be recommending this to the boyfriend once I’ve finished with it!
Dent’s Modern Tribes: The Secret Languages of Britain – Susie Dent
Susie Dent is a QUEEN. Her idiosyncratic phrasebook was on my Christmas list last year, and I was disappointed when Father Christmas failed to deliver this in my stocking on December 25th. Language is such a rich fabric – it never fails to amuse and entertain me. We can be speaking the same language and still not know exactly what is being said (I recall the time a work colleague told me that my eyebrows were ‘on fleek’… I nearly dropped my coffee out of confusion and fear that I was being offended)! This book is a true joy to read. Turning to the pages looking at the lexicography of the emergency services I am very pleased to discover that ‘Eiffel Syndrome’ is the term used to politely explain a patient with a foreign object in their rectum and that ‘UBI’ means an unexplained beer injury (perhaps the two are connected?!). This book will be taking a pride of place on my coffee table for many years to come.
Have you added any new books to your collections in this week? Let me know if you have any recommendations in the comments!