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The Argonauts
The Argonauts | Maggie Nelson
An intrepid voyage out to the frontiers of the latest thinking about love, language, and family Maggie Nelson's The Argonauts is a genre-bending memoir, a work of "autotheory" offering fresh, fierce, and timely thinking about desire, identity, and the limitations and possibilities of love and language. At its center is a romance: the story of the author's relationship with the artist Harry Dodge. This story, which includes Nelson's account of falling in love with Dodge, who is fluidly gendered, as well as her journey to and through a pregnancy, offers a firsthand account of the complexities and joys of (queer) family-making. Writing in the spirit of public intellectuals such as Susan Sontag and Roland Barthes, Nelson binds her personal experience to a rigorous exploration of what iconic theorists have said about sexuality, gender, and the vexed institutions of marriage and child-rearing. Nelson's insistence on radical individual freedom and the value of caretaking becomes the rallying cry of this thoughtful, unabashed, uncompromising book.
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helenharb
The Argonauts | Maggie Nelson
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Pickpick

First book of the new year - this was quite an intense read, deep observation about identity and pregnancy. I've not read anything like it before.

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BarbaraTheBibliophage
The Argonauts | Maggie Nelson
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Pickpick

Parts of this were captivating, and other parts just didn‘t connect for me. That‘s the nature of memoir—reading something about a life other than your own. The parts I didn‘t love were the critical theory aspects, but perhaps I just don‘t have the background to appreciate them. Or maybe I just found them pretentious. I‘d give it not quite a full Pick but more than just So-so.

Full review http://www.TheBibliophage.com
#thebibliophage2020

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Cweeeevs
The Argonauts | Maggie Nelson
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This is a bit late, but I'm finally home after various Christmas visits so have only just put together my book haul presents! I'm really happy with these - they're all very thoughtful and I can't wait to get through them. Maggie Nelson is currently blowing me away with The Argonauts. Has anyone read any of the others? 😊

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BarbaraTheBibliophage
The Argonauts | Maggie Nelson
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I‘m nearly at the end of a busy holiday entertaining schedule. I feel like I‘ve barely been here, Littens. But ... soon life will slow down and return to “normal.” These are “baked eggs with feta and spinach.” I spend about an hour creating them, and my family polishes them off in about ten minutes! I picked a short book to accompany my day. #audiocooking #theargonauts #thoughtprovoking #essays #memoir

Cathythoughts They look good !! I hear you ... all the time cooking & then demolished in a few minutes. 😳😆means it was delicious though 3w
BarbaraTheBibliophage @Cathythoughts Thanks! I am stunned—there are a few pieces left for me to enjoy. 👏🏻 🥚 2w
70 likes1 stack add2 comments
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ephemeralwaltz
The Argonauts | Maggie Nelson
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Pickpick

I had a feeling I was going to devour this. Maggie Nelson journeys into the depths of self-awareness, and more importantly, self-examination to explore the limits of language and desire, the unconscious, deep-spread binaries we abide by, and the joys and fears about motherhood, family-making and queer identities. From Sedgwick and Winnicott to Preciado and Lacan, she uses the work of philosophers and artists to complete her personal reflections.

ephemeralwaltz Impressive! ⭐⭐⭐⭐ 5mo
Bibliogeekery I love this cover! Mine is different (and not as nice). #queerbooks 5mo
68 likes2 stack adds2 comments
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ephemeralwaltz
The Argonauts | Maggie Nelson
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This text is giving me so much.

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scripturient-ink
The Argonauts | Maggie Nelson
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Next up in the world of master's theses: The Argonauts/ Die Argonauten.
[Currently listening to: Heart-Shaped Box by Nirvana]

ephemeralwaltz I like that you share music with your books! Happy to stumble upon your profile. I just started reading this one! 5mo
scripturient-ink @ephemeralwaltz Thank you!! I'm just constantly listening to music, so I thought I might as well add it to my reads 😉 How do you like the Argonauts so far? 5mo
19 likes2 comments
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AVChrista
The Argonauts | Maggie Nelson
Bailedbailed

I rarely stop reading a book, but had to with this one. I found the writing to be a jumble of thoughts that jumped around, which made it annoying to read. Perhaps if this had been organized in a timeline I would have been able to continue.

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ephemeralwaltz
The Argonauts | Maggie Nelson
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Woo-hoo! Treated myself again. I'm really looking forward to immersing myself in this...

Weaponxgirl I really want to read this! 7mo
ephemeralwaltz @Weaponxgirl seems exactly like our kind of read! 7mo
64 likes2 comments
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Caterina
The Argonauts | Maggie Nelson
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#Pippin #BostonTerriersofLitsy #DogsofLitsy
I started the audiobook of this from my library (read by the author) but switched to the library ebook and I'm enjoying it more. I think it works better in print.

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MargaretPinardAuthor
The Argonauts | Maggie Nelson
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So true, and connecting so many lines of truth from different circles in my life right now.
Do what you love.
Fight the power.
Change the system.
ENJOY your life. That‘s what the f@$&kers hate the most.

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GondorGirl
The Argonauts | Maggie Nelson
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LaurenReads
The Argonauts | Maggie Nelson
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Mehso-so

I really loved parts of this book. It was beautifully written, but so many references were made to writers, poets and artists that I had never heard of that I felt like many parts went right over my head. #audiobook #nonfiction

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OrangeMooseReads
The Argonauts | Maggie Nelson
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Mehso-so

Identity. Even though we change and morph we are still us. We have to go through the changes to become us.
This is an interesting book. It comes across as a letter to her son about how he came to be through the changes and challenges his parents went through to become who they are and have him. It is read by the author.
It was at times hard to follow, but still not all bad.

readordierachel I love how she writes 9mo
45 likes2 stack adds1 comment
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notreallyelaine
Argonauts | Maggie Nelson
Pickpick

I didn‘t wanna like this book bc of the hype but I cried in Jewel during the hospital scene anyway. Beautiful, honest, intimate. I‘m a sucker for that nerdy Gen-X queer academic type. For whatever reason this book felt refreshing, almost old-fashioned, in its style and courage. Maybe I wouldn‘t like it as much on second read, but it packed an emotional first punch.

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Aimeesue
The Argonauts | Maggie Nelson
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❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️

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RebeccaH
The Argonauts | Maggie Nelson
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1. Maggie Nelson (for intellectual writing that‘s also personal and beautiful)
2. Jane Austen (for her power as a observer and her way of making everyday life fascinating)
3. Tressie McMillan Cottom (esp. THICK, which is intellectual, brilliant and personal, like Maggie Nelson)
4. Nicholson Baker (esp. THE MEZZANINE, which taught me what strange things novels can do).
5. Sayaka Murata (esp. THE CONVENIENCE STORE WOMAN: novels in translation!)

CouronneDhiver # 5 - brilliant book! 11mo
17 likes1 comment
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britt_brooke
The Argonauts | Maggie Nelson
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Panpan

⭐️ This has been touted as “genre-bending” NF, but honestly, it just felt like a lengthy college essay that had no idea what it wanted to be. I found it incredibly inaccessible. The first paragraph was so pretentious that I almost bailed 10 second in. I didn‘t like the writing nor style, which tremendously hindered my ability to reap any connection with Nelson. Though, I doubt she cares as she peers down from her esoteric high horse.

britt_brooke @kgriffith I disliked the writing and style too much to even care what she had to say, which is unfortunate. 😩 12mo
megnews I love your review. 12mo
britt_brooke @megnews Thank you! 💚 12mo
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Reviewsbylola I bailed on this two pages in. 😂 12mo
Reviewsbylola Although I really liked her book 12mo
britt_brooke @Reviewsbylola I should have, but I have a hard time bailing. It‘s a major character flaw. 😆 12mo
britt_brooke @Reviewsbylola I may try that one some day. She talks about it a little in this one. 12mo
ReadingRover Yeah I tried this on audiobook and bailed pretty quickly. 12mo
britt_brooke @ReadingRover The narration is terrible. It might be better in print, but I‘ll never find out. 🙅🏼‍♀️ 12mo
118 likes2 stack adds9 comments
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britt_brooke
The Argonauts | Maggie Nelson
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▶️🎧

@kgriffith I borrowed this after seeing your recent posts. I know you weren‘t keen on it being nonfiction, so I‘m curious how you ended up liking it?

kgriffith I‘ll be interested to hear what you think of the audio; one of the people in book club listened to it as well, and they said they think they were able to feel less of the negative feelings some of us had during the beginning of the book in particular because they couldn‘t dwell on anything, they just let the book play on. I had very extreme feelings, both negative and positive, throughout. It certainly made me think, and want to discuss it, but 12mo
kgriffith I‘m not sure that I liked it, per se. I don‘t feel like it was time wasted by any means, though, and I‘m glad I read it. (edited) 12mo
britt_brooke @kgriffith Thank you - I‘m already not sure how I feel and I think it‘ll be a hard one to review. I‘ll tag you when I do, though. 12mo
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kgriffith @britt_brooke fwiw, it definitely becomes a bit more fluid/memoir-like after 50 or so pages (about 1/3 of the way through) 12mo
britt_brooke @kgriffith That is helpful - thanks! 12mo
A_woman_on_a_bike Hi both! @britt_brooke @kgriffith I saw your posts yesterday. By complete coincidence I had just been listening to “A Good Read” on BBC radio 4, which included this book. I thought you might find it interesting so here is the link https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/m00027n8 12mo
113 likes1 stack add7 comments
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brandybear22
The Argonauts | Maggie Nelson
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Dinner and a movie? Nah... queer book club and game store! Loved the book, look forward to playing the game!

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kgriffith
The Argonauts | Maggie Nelson
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Trying to get through the last ~30p before book club. #24in48 #readathon #queerbooks #readinginbed

julesG You can do this! 12mo
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kgriffith
The Argonauts | Maggie Nelson
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With one exception re: her stepfather, every passage I‘ve been able to relate to has been in her observation of Harry, or very specific aspects of their relationship. #queerbooks #bookclub #24in48 #readathon

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kgriffith
The Argonauts | Maggie Nelson
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Content note: discussion of sexual violence in the full paragraph.
“I don‘t even want to talk about ‘female sexuality‘ until there is a control group. And there never will be.” #24in48 #readathon #queerbooks

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Stephkesey
The Argonauts | Maggie Nelson
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Pickpick

It took me a bit to get into this as it veers into some inaccesible philosophical writing that can sometimes seem to put up an emotional barrier to the meat of it. But in the end I felt deeply connected and actually appreciative of the intellectual context the references provide. It weaves together several strands of Nelson‘s relationship, pregnancy, early motherhood, death of her partner‘s mother, identity and thought processes.

britt_brooke Nice review! 12mo
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kgriffith
The Argonauts | Maggie Nelson
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The passage from When the Moon Was Ours reminded me of this part of The Argonauts I read earlier today and while I‘m not saying I like the book yet I can‘t deny that it‘s had moments that resonate so very deeply.

brandybear22 I do still want to discuss this book with you, and yes, even this passage 12mo
kgriffith @brandybear22 Yes please. 12mo
35 likes2 comments
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kgriffith
The Argonauts | Maggie Nelson
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Further remnants of my games gathering. tagged book is the one I‘m really struggling to tell anyone, anything about how it feels to read it, because feeling stupid isn‘t my jam.

TrishB There are a couple of authors that do that to me! I haven‘t read this one though. 12mo
Puredragonstar That unicorn pillow!!! 🦄 Can I ask where you got it??? 12mo
kgriffith @Puredragonstar Yogibo! We have a store in our mall, but you can order online too 😊 🦄 12mo
Puredragonstar Thank you!!! 🦄🤩 12mo
47 likes4 comments
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brandybear22
The Argonauts | Maggie Nelson
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I think I‘ll be an n of one, at my book group, or elsewhere, in saying that I actually enjoyed this book. It may be that my intersectionality and life experience, that I am the niche she writes to. I enjoyed the experience, even in my disagreements with critique or generalized commentary, or shifting context.

The headlamp, I use one to read in bed. Yes, I‘ll get a lamp, I said three years ago.

kgriffith While I wish I could have met you here, probably others in the book group will have enjoyed it, so I‘m sure there will be conversation. 💜 12mo
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kgriffith
The Argonauts | Maggie Nelson
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I also have a complicated relationship with my stepfather, and came to terms with my parents‘ ages relative to my own not having much meaning some time ago. It helped me find compassion where before there had been primarily resentment, anger, shame.

sixgun Such a meaningful quote, and so, so true! 12mo
brandybear22 Interestingly, as I have gained perspective, I‘ve more or less lost some of my compassion for my parents, and I expect they will have disappointed me greatly by the time I am 40 12mo
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kgriffith
The Argonauts | Maggie Nelson
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This book is making me :angry:
She has these really lovely and stark and profound sentences here and there but they‘re surrounded by inaccessible doublespeak and shit like this, where I can‘t tell if she‘s being facetious or not, but in context, I think probably not.
More than one very intelligent person I know has rage-quit reading this, which I find myself feeling the need to say because I don‘t want to look stupid, and THAT makes me angry.

tournevis Yeah, I would have rage quitted right there too. 12mo
Soubhiville Nothing on this page makes me want to read this. It seems kind of awful. 12mo
kgriffith @tournevis @Soubhiville I‘m going to balance it out with some of the good stuff too, just don‘t want to flood anyone‘s feed 😉 And there IS good stuff, but you have to be willing and able to wade through the rest. 12mo
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LauraBeth I‘ll just be over here waiting for your book to be written... 😀 12mo
kgriffith @LauraBeth I know, I know, armchair critic over here... 😋 12mo
LauraBeth No - I meant it seriously! Write a book! 12mo
kgriffith @LauraBeth lol, well thank you! That actually is the eventual plan, and how I ended up going back to school: the scholarship board of the local LGBT business alliance is waiting for my book, too! 🤓 12mo
LauraBeth 💃💃 12mo
tournevis @kgriffith @LauraBeth It's a curse for a lot of us. 12mo
Broke_Girl_Reads I put this one down, too, thought I‘m not sure if it‘s a DNF or a “try again later” for me. I was getting frustrated with that kind of snobby, more-intellectual-than-thou attitude she applied to activism. I‘m not sure if that‘s how she meant it, but it‘s definitely how I was receiving it 12mo
kgriffith @Broke_Girl_Reads I think that‘s a more than fair assessment. 12mo
39 likes11 comments
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kgriffith
The Argonauts | Maggie Nelson
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“What if where I am is what I need? . . . I never imagined it might apply to joy, too.”

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brandybear22
The Argonauts | Maggie Nelson
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Yeah I‘d say I never really been a baby/ animal/ houseplant/ garden... self care person either 🤷‍♂️ my kid and cats and garden and plants seem to do fairly well besides, though I‘m still working on the self care department. I expect I should keep finding time for more books 📚!

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kgriffith
The Argonauts | Maggie Nelson
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“That my mother made me the mug, in part to indicate that she recognizes and accepts my tribe as family?”

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brandybear22
The Argonauts | Maggie Nelson
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Just starting with this book. My queer book club read this month. I‘m interested, though with some... trepidation? Perhaps.

I think this book has the potential to _matter_ for me

kgriffith I might need you to make me start this one, I‘ve been actively avoiding it since my copy arrived last week... 12mo
brandybear22 @kgriffith “to be femme is to bring honor where there has been shame” 12mo
kgriffith @brandybear22 ugh, but at the same time, a femme friend of mine texted me today to tell me how much she hated this book :/ 12mo
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kgriffith Okay, I‘m going to set the Dalai Lama and Archbishop Tutu aside and give this a shot. I‘ve been rethinking some queer community and identity stuff lately that might give me a different take on this from people I‘ve agreed with before. 12mo
brandybear22 @kgriffith you‘re going to finish it before i even get started really, but so far, I think it does stand well as a critique 12mo
kgriffith Oh I doubt that, especially not if I live-text my friend as I read, as I promised to do ;) 12mo
brandybear22 @kgriffith your friend may not be wrong, but the discourse, yes, that will be something. This was the book I was debating as a gift, I guess we‘ll see if that would have been a most terrible idea 🤷‍♂️ though it may be more something focused on me, as be the experience of observing and knowing yourself from another 12mo
kgriffith @brandybear22 I think that the conversation that‘ll come of it will be valuable regardless of how either of us or anyone in book club feels about it. I‘m particularly interested in talking about it with you. 12mo
brandybear22 @kgriffith you are very sweet. We‘ll start with the first poem quoted. This may have a capital ‘C‘ but I don‘t mind 😉 12mo
kgriffith @brandybear22 ...I might be biting my lip and grinning. You‘re on. 12mo
6 likes1 stack add10 comments
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kgriffith
The Argonauts | Maggie Nelson
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Got this one for #queerbookclub today. I didn‘t know before I bought it that it‘s non-fiction. Not looking forward to it as much as I was before this realization. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

britt_brooke That makes me want to read it! I had no idea this was nonfiction. #stacked 12mo
brandybear22 There‘s a fair bit of critique and theory, which I find engaging 12mo
kgriffith @brandybear22 that‘s because you‘re brilliant. I like that about you. 💋 12mo
40 likes1 stack add3 comments
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mauveandrosysky
The Argonauts | Maggie Nelson
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Pickpick

This is a very smart book. And it‘s nice reading about a very smart woman‘s thoughts on pregnancy and motherhood—among other topics. In reality, though, I think I expected something different—and yes, much of that is on me. There are passages I loved, particularly when Nelson was more focused on the personal parts of her life. But so much of it is abstract and theoretical, making it difficult for me to fully connect with it the way I had hoped.

Redwritinghood I felt this was more academic than I had expected, but I also liked it a lot. Very thought-provoking. 13mo
26 likes1 comment
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GeorgeanneD
The Argonauts | Maggie Nelson
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On to the next one

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Broke_Girl_Reads
The Argonauts | Maggie Nelson
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I‘m enjoying a lot of things about this book, but Nelson‘s sense of humor is probably my favorite thing about it so far #currentlyreading #nonfiction #queerbooks

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Booksy
Argonauts | Maggie Nelson
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What is your pleasure? you asked, then stuck around for an answer.

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Reagan
The Argonauts | Maggie Nelson
Bailedbailed

Nope. I tried. This book made me feel stupid. I found it convoluted, I was not expecting a philosophy lecture which was how it came across. Made it halfway and was wondering when the part about her and her partner would start. Disappointment city. Moving on!

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UrsulaMonarch
The Argonauts | Maggie Nelson
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Pickpick

It took me a while to get into this book, but I'm glad I did. There's so much here in terms of gender, literature, and relationships. I feel inarticulate trying to express it!

35 likes3 stack adds
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dogra
The Argonauts | Maggie Nelson
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Finished a few months ago. Another brilliant and unique memoir from Maggie Nelson. Read her, if you haven‘t to this point. #LiteraryNonfiction #autobiographical #memoirs

5 likes1 stack add
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MDodge
The Argonauts | Maggie Nelson
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Pickpick

Aaaand done with book 5 (and my errands). Having trouble picking what‘s probably going to be my last book of the day though... #24in47

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MDodge
The Argonauts | Maggie Nelson
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Switching to audio for a bit this morning to get some errands done! As ever Maggie Nelson is a goddess this got me through a run and some grocery shopping in a good mood 🙂 #24in48 @24in48

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AnneCecilie
The Argonauts | Maggie Nelson
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Pickpick

I didn't know much about this book going in. I only knew that people seemed to love it and what the blurb said. WOW, was I blown away!!! Maggie writes about her relationship with transgender Harry Dodge, and their family. She uses a lot of anecdotes and quotes philosophers, and I loved it. She really brings home the fact that one couple's experience, doesn't apply to everyone else in the same situation. I will definitely read other works by her.

sprainedbrain Loved this one! 2y
45 likes1 stack add1 comment
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perfectlywinged
The Argonauts | Maggie Nelson
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I just want to tear through this but I have to pause so often to ruminate on the profundity of her experience

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AnneCecilie
The Argonauts | Maggie Nelson
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On Friday, I started the weekend with a bookstore 😀 I came out with the top two books. I've seen a lot of Litsy love for Vernon Subutex. The other novel, Sommerlys trans. Summer Lights, is by an Icelandic author, and I get some Reservoir 13 vibes from it without the missing girl. I really loved Reservoir 13 and hope this is just as good.

Today, another bookstore and I came out with the bottom book. I've heard nothing but good things about it.

Lindy The Argonauts is a delight. I really loved Reservoir 13 too. I wonder if Summer Light has been translated into English? 2y
AnneCecilie @Lindy I had to do some research for this. The author Jon Kalman Stefansson has been translated into English, but so far it doesn't look as if this novel has been translated. Complete title is Summer Light and then came the night. (edited) 2y
Lindy @AnneCecilie Thanks! 2y
50 likes3 comments
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HamuelSunter
The Argonauts | Maggie Nelson
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Pickpick

I missed this when it came out. I heard it was great but I have, or had, a bias against writers who go by a diminutive. I hesitated on Ben Lerner, balked at Ali Smith, and neglected Maggie Nelson. Now I‘m big into all three. The Argonauts is wonderful. It‘s a deeply considered meditation on what a family is.

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sakeriver
Argonauts | Maggie Nelson
Pickpick

What a book. By turns vexing, hilarious, troubling, heartbreaking; always deeply intelligent. It‘s a strange but necessary thing, to consider that the world & its systems are ruled by the aggregate, but that our experience of that world is always & necessarily deeply individual; Nelson insists on complicating every narrative, every way of being. Perhaps this could be a lonely thing—it is for me, at times—but reading this, it‘s affirming as well.

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sakeriver
Argonauts | Maggie Nelson
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Oof

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sakeriver
Argonauts | Maggie Nelson
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Up next.