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Monday, February 11, 2013

Joseph Mitchell

Joseph Mitchell
as viewed by Nick Sung (1908-1996)
no copyright infringement intended

Joseph Mitchel came to New York in 1929, with the ambition to become a writer. He began working for several newspapers, the Herald Tribune among them. It was there that he got the advice to simply walk the city, to know every corner and every quirky guy. And that is what he did, for tenths of years, walking the city, knowing each corner and each quirky guy, and writing fabulous stories about them. Beginning 1938 he started his lifelong collaboration with The New Yorker.

There is in the current issue of The New Yorker a first chapter of his book of memoirs, that he never completed. It's amazing his empathy for the city, for the avatars of each building, bars and hotels and small stores, and synagogues getting into Christian churches and mosques and going the way back, as the population in that particular neighborhood was changing. It's amazing his uncanny feeling of the city life, of each street. And his immense pleasure to walk the city, without any plan in mind, at random, dreaming the city and looking at it, and dreaming again.

(A Life in Books)

(New York, New York)



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