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Sontag, Susan . SUSAN SONTAG: "DEBRIEFING" SHORT STORY: THE RECORDING ON ORIGINAL VINYL LP. New York City, NY: Tanam Press, 1979. Hardcover. First Edition/First Printing. 2 pages. Fine.

Rare Susan Sontag collectible set. A rare fine copy of her landmark recording of "Debriefing" with a rare intact copy of the PBS Video (VHS NTSC) of "Susan Sontag: A Writer's Workshop". The LP plays perfectly, and commits for posterity Susan Sontag's memorable reading of "Debriefing" (she called it a "performance", just like any other formal recording, which it is). The vinyl comes in its original sleeve and protective plastic cover. It is enclosed in a sturdy cardboard box. Both the LP and the PBS Video are now rare. Presents "Debriefing", one of Susan Sontag's finest short stories, in a dramatic and poignant reading by the author herself. One of the expectations that modern readers have about writing is "the writer's voice". It is the result of the fact that the advent of print rendered speech (and the pre-Gutenberg oral tradition) obsolete. Nevertheless, the nostalgia for speech lives on among readers (as well as everyone else). "Hearing" the writer's voice through the written/printed text itself remains the standard by which we judge a work's literary merit, particularly its "authenticity". When we read a text, we do so not just with our eyes but also with our ears, paying close attention to the way a writer uses sound effects: Intonations, rhythms, accents, and other emphases, and the quality of the voice itself. We call the sum total "the writer's voice", his or her distinctive, indeed unique, personality as expressed and self-evident through sound. At the same time, we are actually able to hear the writer's real voice through public appearances/readings, "live" or mass media, and through permanent recordings. The problem is that most writers' actual voices do not "match" the sound-personality of their words. Reading aloud is a talent in and of itself; many writers have terrible speaking voices (think of Simone De Beauvoir's and Truman Capote's jarringly high-pitched, shrill voices), and they know it. Readers who were fortunate to have heard Sontag in person will always remember what a beautiful voice she had: Deep, husky, and sexy, never high-pitched or shrill. As such, her recording of "Debriefing" is a landmark event, preserved for posterity. The PBS "Writer's Workshop" Series aired on the network and were sponsored by the University of South Carolina, where the workshops were held. The Series aired on television and were subsequently released as individual tapes on a very small and limited basis. Most of the tapes were acquired by libraries and university collections, this copy being one of them. "You have to be willing to be rejected, of course. You have to have a certain innocent relationship to your work" (Susan Sontag). An absolute "must-have" set for Susan Sontag collectors. This vinyl LP recording of "Debriefing" is a modern classic. It comes with a copy of the PBS Video "Susan Sontag: The Writer's Workshop" tape. As far as we know, this is the only such set available online and is in especially fine condition: Clean, crisp, and bright, pristine beauties. A rare set thus. One of the most influential and important American writer-intellectuals of the 20th century. A fine collectible set. (SEE ALSO OTHER SUSAN SONTAG TITLES IN OUR CATALOG). $150.00

This item is available for purchase. This web page was most recently updated on February 22, 2017.