Can a healthy political system exist in Internet times?

Alternet seems skeptical, and quotes "MAGIC AND LOSS" (thank you!). 

"Under these circumstances, a healthy political system cannot really exist. I am not sure healthy individuals can either. Heffernan goes on to say that in this digital age of non-stop communication, “we’re all more alone than ever.” That may be the most profound and enduring effect of the media on our politics. We are now so divided we may not be able to unite; we are so divided we live within an aching metaphysical malaise of unconnectedness. We have more “friends” than ever, but feel more friendless."

'I’m in awe every day': Virginia Heffernan on technology, virtual reality, and what the Internet means

This great Q&A at Salon:

"Why did poetry suddenly become short when the New Yorker was the gatekeeper for all poetry? If you’re weighing it against a cartoon and columns of text, then suddenly you can’t write like Walt Whitman with long lines. Most great American art forms, including novels, do end up finding a way to make some money. I know some artists don’t like to have to push back on the market, but to a great extent I appreciate the art that finds dynamic tension in that relationship, and not just crushing tyranny."

The Internet Will Never Die: An MTV Q&A with Virginia Heffernan

I wasn’t a great talker, but I found these other skills. And when this stuff is described as “not real writing” or “bad for my brain” or whatever, it just seems like it’s from people who wanted to keep their place at the dinner table.
— MTV:

'Magic + Loss' in The New Yorker!

Louis Menand on Tom Vanderbilt's new book on taste and "Magic and Loss." 

...her book (thankfully) is more like an essay than like a treatise. Heffernan is smart, her writing has flair, she can refer intelligently to Barthes, Derrida, and Benjamin—also to Aquinas, Dante, and Proust—and she knows a lot about the Internet and its history. She is good company.

10 Reasons to Read MAGIC AND LOSS Right Now

Hi everyone!

I’m Brianna, Virginia’s Internet fanfriend, and I want to tell you about all the love forMAGIC AND LOSS.

There’s so much buzz out there that, even as president of the VH fan club, I can hardly keep up. But I’ve put some of the greatest praise in a LISTICLE for supermax enjoyment of reading.

1. Because Virginia's appearance on "The Open Mind" on PBS is incredible. And says it all. You can see it on PBS World today at 3:30 or just watch right here

2. Because Mark O’Connell of Slate couldn’t stop writing “YES!” and “TRUTH!” in the margins.

3. And because the NYT’s Justin Ellis, in his fawning review, called Virginia “a gleeful trickster.” 

4. And don't take it from me, Twitterers like @daviewheeler said what I wanted to say, which is that he can’t stop telling people to read it, The New Yorker’s @AdrianChen said he couldn't wait to read the book because V’s excellent “Medium” column (my absolute fav, too) “was a big inspiration” to him. Then, @emmafromtoronto (aka Emma Healey) took one read of "M&L" and went"wonderful wonderful wonderful"! And there was MORE from@CathyNDavidson@KateBolick and mooooreeeeeee.

5. Uh, did I seriously wait till No. 5 to tell you GWYNETH GOOPALOOP PALTROW put MAGIC AND LOSS in her MFing SUMMER READING GUIDE

6. The National Post's review of Virginia's book goes like this: "Hallucinatory splendor! Nobody else talks about the Web this way." 

7. Because just got it when they said, “The author illustrates that the Internet is more than just a technological leap forward; it's an artistic marvel.” 

8. And but seriously, Edward Mendelson, of the country’s foremost authority on literature, The New York Review of Books, described the book as “an ecstatic narrative of submission.” Truth.

9. Because it comes in easy-to-consume AUDIOBOOK FORM, with this tasty preview that is just the tastiest of audiobook previews.

10. I nearly cried of the most joyous joy when Diana Kimball, in a beautiful response,wrote on Medium, “If the time you spend on the internet is important to you, Magic and Loss will be important to you, too. I recommend it completely,” because she is completely all-consumingly heart-explodingly RIGHT.

 Want to read, watch, and hear more about MAGIC AND LOSS? BOOM:

The New York Times

The New York Review of Books

The Wall Street Journal


WIRED: Must-Read Books

Best of NPR Books

Bookish: This Week's Hottest Releases

Men's Journal: Best Books of June


CNBC's Squawk Box

Bloomberg TV: The Digitization of Everything

The Takeaway (NPR)

Weekend Edition (NPR)

The Brian Lehrer Show (NPR)

Change This Manifesto

The Felt Internet by Diana Kimball

National Post

Gateway Media


Smithsonian Magazine

Brooklyn Rail

Shelf Awareness

Saturday Evening Post: Cool Books for Summer

Lenny Letter

Diana Kimball's Newsletter


Scott Goodson's Uprising!!! (podcast!) 


Twitter praise for the book <3

"Magic and Loss" in the NYT Book Review

"Heffernan is a gleeful trickster, a semiotics fan with an unabashed sweet tooth for pop culture, who believes we shouldn’t confuse grief over the passing of our favorite technology with resentment because some digital alchemy failed to preserve analog experiences: ­“Whether or not we admit it, the internet and its artifacts are not just like their cultural precedents. They’re not even a rough translation — or a strong misreading — of those precedents.” -- Justin Ellis 

(Read the whole thing here.)