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The lonely city : adventures in the art of being alone / Olivia Laing.

  • Laing, Olivia
  • Books

About this work


"You can be lonely anywhere, but there is a particular flavor to the loneliness that comes from living in a city, surrounded by thousands of strangers. The Lonely City is a roving cultural history of urban loneliness, centered on the ultimate city: Manhattan, that teeming island of gneiss, concrete, and glass. What does it mean to be lonely? How do we live, if we're not intimately involved with another human being? How do we connect with other people, particularly if our sexuality or physical body is considered deviant or damaged? Does technology draw us closer together or trap us behind screens? Olivia Laing explores these questions by travelling deep into the work and lives of some of the century's most original artists, among them Andy Warhol, David Wojnarowicz, Edward Hopper, Henry Darger and Klaus Nomi. Part memoir, part biography, part dazzling work of cultural criticism, The Lonely City is not just a map, but a celebration of the state of loneliness. It's a voyage out to a strange and sometimes lovely island, adrift from the larger continent of human experience, but visited by many - millions, say - of souls"--


Edinburgh : Canongate, 2016.

Physical description

315 pages : black and white illustrations ; 23 cm


Machine generated contents note: 1.The Lonely City -- 2.Walls of Glass -- 3.My Heart Opens to Your Voice -- 4.In Loving Him -- 5.The Realms of the Unreal -- 6.At the Beginning of the End of the World -- 7.Render Ghosts -- 8.Strange Fruit.

Bibliographic information

Includes bibliographical references (pages 299-310).


  • English

Where to find it

  • LocationStatus
    History of Medicine
    Open shelves

Permanent link



  • 9781782111238
  • 1782111239