How to Be Normal:

By Phil Christman

A collection of essays by the author of the critically acclaimed Midwest Futures.

Building on themes explored in his first book—specifically the notion of normality, or banality, or just plain "averageness" as it relates to Midwesternness and other modes of identity—Phil Christman here writes from the intersection of his own various identities: Democratic Socialist, antiracist, prison abolitionist, former fundamentalist, striving feminist. Essays covers such questions as "How to Be a Man," "How to Be a Creature," "How to Be Gen X," and "How to Be a Neoliberal Subject" (on Richard Nixon); all are united by Christman's radical openness to inquiry. In the hands of this probing, witty writer, even the most seemingly "normal" subjects blossom into explorations laced with curiosity and delight.

A book that speaks to lovers of writing that engages with big ideas an small, whether they be normal or not.