By David Wojnarowicz
In as regards to the Knives, David Wojnarowicz provides us a tremendous and well timed rfile: a suite of artistic essays -- a scathing, horny, sublimely funny and sincere own testimony to the "Fear of range in America." From the author's violent youth in suburbia to eventual homelessness at the streets and piers of recent York urban, to acceptance as essentially the most provocative artists of his iteration -- as regards to the Knives is his robust and iconoclastic memoir. road lifestyles, medications, paintings and nature, family members, AIDS, politics, friendship and popularity: Wojnarowicz demanding situations us to ascertain our lives -- politically, socially, emotionally, and aesthetically
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Additional resources for Close to the Knives
Neil’s sensitivity to this force is often expressed somewhat bitterly, in small signs of resentment that occasionally appear amid the seeming idyll of budding romance. When Brenda vaguely indicates that she goes to college in Boston, Neil tells the reader, testily, that he’s not embarrassed to tell people he attended Newark Colleges of Rutgers (GC 10). When Brenda casually mentions that she “lived in Newark when [she] was a baby,” Neil is suddenly, unaccountably, angry (GC 12). And when Brenda unwittingly derides Newark in chastising her mother for not properly adapting to the family’s affluence, Neil cannot “shake from [his] elephant’s brain that she-still-thinks-we-live-in-Newark remark” (GC 24).
In this way, Neil’s sometimes ardent, often conflicted love affair with Brenda is also a love affair with Short Hills, with the increasingly prosperous lifestyle of American Jews. Near the end of the novella, when Neil is apprehensive about his future with Brenda, he wanders into a cathedral and informally addresses God. What is he after? What is he pursuing? Which prize will be his reward? “Which prize do you think, schmuck? Gold dinnerware, sporting-goods trees, The American Jewish Experience and the New York Intellectuals 27 nectarines, garbage disposals, bumpless noses, Patimkin Sink, Bonwit Teller—” (GC 92).
The Patimkins are a nouveau riche Jewish family living in Short Hills, a prosperous New Jersey suburb less than ten miles away from Newark on the map, but much further in terms of lifestyle. Early in the story, Neil asks his aunt where she keeps the suburban phone book, so he can call Brenda. Aunt Gladys is typically exasperated: “That skinny book? ” (GC 4). Later, Aunt Gladys, ever the voice of urban Jewishness, asks, “Since when do Jewish people live in Short Hills? They couldn’t be real Jews believe me” (GC 53).