Image of UNITED STATES: ESSAYS 1952-1992
(Click for larger image)

Vidal Gore. UNITED STATES: ESSAYS 1952-1992. New York City, NY: Random House, 1993. Hardcover. First Edition/First Printing. 1300 pages. Fine/Fine.

Massive retrospective collection of essays. One of the most valuable literary collections of the 20th century. The First Hardcover Edition. Precedes and should not be confused with all other subsequent editions. Published in a small and limited first print run as a hardcover original only. The First Edition is now scarce. The brilliant DJ design by Andy Carpenter features Jasper Johns' iconic painting of the American flag, "Flag, 1958". Presents Gore Vidal's "United States: Essays 1952-1992". His six-pound-gorilla volume, featuring all of the essays by Gore Vidal during the productive forty-year period of his career, when American literature and his own renown as the quintessential American public intellectual-writer were at their peak. Vidal's avid readers have always been divided between those who are awed by his now-completed series of novels on American history (like Harold Bloom and Newt Gingrich, ideological opposites who both treasure "Lincoln" as a masterpiece) and those who believe that it's the essays that will endure (like nemesis Truman Capote, who regarded them as his best work). "United States" is in three parts ("State of The Art", "State of The Union", and "State of Being") and consists of 114 essays. Vidal's unsurpassed genius as a modern aphorist makes him our Montaigne, possibly the greatest essayist America produced in the late-20th century. But it also leads us to take his effortless one-liners at face value when the whole point of the aphorism is to read between the lines because that is where the truth lies. Gore Vidal died on July 31, 2012 at the age of 86, the last of the great American public intellectual/writers of our time. We live in the Age of Mediocrity, where (nearly) everyone is a critic/blogger/pundit mouthing timid, politically correct opinions. Someday, we will realize what we have irretrievably lost. An absolute "must-have" title for Gore Vidal collectors. This copy is very prominently and beautifully signed in blue ink-pen on the title page by Gore Vidal. It is signed directly on the page itself, not on a tipped-in page. This title is a great collection. This is one of few such signed copies of the First Hardcover Edition/First Printing still available online and is in especially fine condition: Clean, crisp, and bright, a pristine beauty. It is, quite simply, the most beautiful signed copy we have ever seen. Please note: The full number line that includes the Number 2 (instead of the Number 1) with the "First Edition" statement were the Random House "true first" indications at the time of the book's publication. Copies available online have serious flaws, are subsequent printings, or are remainder-marked. This is surely an accessible and lovely alternative. A rare signed copy thus. Recipient of the National Book Award's Lifetime Achievement Award in 2009 for "Distinguished Contribution to American Letters". One of the greatest writers of the 20th century. A fine collectible copy. (SEE ALSO OTHER GORE VIDAL TITLES IN OUR CATALOG). ISBN 0679414894. $400.00

This item is available for purchase. This web page was most recently updated on August 08, 2020.