In Praise of Nothing

In Praise of Nothing

Essays, Memoir, and Experiments

By Eric Charles Lemay

Emergency Press, Paperback, 9780988569478, 203pp.

Publication Date: June 10, 2014


Why do we keep playing the lottery when we know we’ll lose? How does what we laugh atthose bad jokes, wry allusions, and nasty pratfallstell us who we are? And what happens when, through some unforeseen mishap, we lose our identities and become Jane or John Doe? Eric LeMay explores these and other questions in fifteen innovative essays that center on the American self. From reflections on small-town life and baby-making to meditations on found art, 19th century landscape gardens, webcams, and the emergence of the AIDS pandemic, these essays celebrate the layered selves we inhabit, inherent, and sometimes invent. With humor and with reverence, In Praise of Nothing beholds what Wallace Stevens has called the nothing that is not there and the nothing that is.”

About the Author
Eric LeMay teaches writing, literature, and film courses at Northwestern University and the University of Chicago and is the assistant editor of TriQuarterly magazine. He won the 1999 Discovery Award, and his poems have been published in The Paris Review, The Nation, Western Humanities Review, and The Antioch Review.