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Lucas Thompson

Lucas Thompson

Lucas Thompson is a Research Fellow at the United States Studies Centre at the University of Sydney. He is the author of Global Wallace: David Foster Wallace and World Literature (2016), along with a wide variety of journal articles, book chapters, and reviews relating to contemporary US fiction.

Lucas Thompson reviews 'The Recovering: Intoxication and its aftermath' by Leslie Jamison

January-February 2019, no. 408 31 August 2018
There is an eerie sameness to addiction memoirs, which tend to follow the same basic structure. In the beginning, there is some immense and unassuageable pain, followed by the discovery of one substance or another that dulls some of that pain. Then comes the dawning realisation that this anaesthetising substance is itself causing more pain than it relieves – to oneself, to society, and to those ... (read more)

Lucas Thompson reviews 'See What Can Be Done: Essays, criticism, and commentary' by Lorrie Moore

August 2018, no. 403 27 July 2018
It saddens me to say it, but Lorrie Moore’s first collection of non-fiction is a serious disappointment. Having long admired her astonishing fiction, I came to this new book expecting to find obscure essays and little-known gems from across Moore’s long career. Instead, I came away wishing that Moore would give up writing non-fiction and devote herself entirely to short stories and novels. De ... (read more)

Lucas Thompson reviews 'The Best Australian Essays 2017' edited by Anna Goldsworthy

March 2018, no. 399 22 February 2018
It takes only five months for a newt to regrow a lost limb. Skittles and Tic Tacs both made public statements denouncing Donald Trump during the 2016 Presidential race. Psychologists have learned that whenever we believe that a problem – like addiction, domestic abuse, or climate change – is intractable, our brains appear programmed to ignore it. The world’s best freedivers reach depths of 2 ... (read more)

Lucas Thompson reviews 'Mirror Sydney' by Vanessa Berry

January–February 2018, no. 398 22 December 2017
Cities are essentially palimpsests, layered with overlapping lives, structures, and stories. Constantly in flux, each city is a sprawling and unwieldy text that is continually being rewritten. In Mirror Sydney, Vanessa Berry peels back many of the Harbour City’s layers, to reveal a tangle of hidden meanings and bygone inhabitants. Her book takes us on an eccentric journey through forgotten parts ... (read more)