Postcards from the End of America

Postcards from the End of America

by Linh Dinh


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Roaming the country by bus and train, on a budget and without any institutional support, Linh Dinh set out to document, in words and pictures, what life is like for people. From Los Angeles, Cheyenne, Portland, and New Orleans, to Jackson and Wolf Point—Linh walked miles and miles through unfamiliar neighborhoods, talking to whoever would talk to him: the homeless living in tent cities, the peddlers, the protestors, the public preachers, the prostitutes. With the uncompromising eye of a Walker Evans or a Dorothea Lange, and the indomitable, forthright prose of a modern-day Nelson Algren or James Agee, Dinh documents the appalling and the absurd with warmth and honesty, giving voice to America's often forgotten citizens and championing the awesome strength it takes to survive for those on the bottom. 

Growing out of a photo and political writing blog Linh has maintained since 2009, Postcards from the End of America is an unflinching diary of what Linh sees as the accelerating collapse of America. Tracking the economic, political, and social unraveling—from the casinos to the abandoned factories and over all the sidewalks in between—with a poet's incisive tongue, Linh shows us the uncanny power of the people in the face of societal devastation.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781609806538
Publisher: Seven Stories Press
Publication date: 01/17/2017
Pages: 368
Sales rank: 620,664
Product dimensions: 5.80(w) x 8.90(h) x 1.10(d)

About the Author

A recipient of a Pew Foundation grant, a David T. Wong Fellowship, a Lannan Residency and, most recently, the Asian American Literary Award, LINH DINH was born in Saigon in 1963 and emigrated to the United States in 1975. An acclaimed and provocative writer of short stories and contemporary fables, he is also the author of several books of poems and a novel, Love Like Hate. Linh has edited the anthologies Night, Again: Contemporary Fiction from Vietnam and Three Vietnamese Poets. His collection of stories, Blood and Soap was chosen by the Village Voice as one of the Best Books of 2004. Linh's nonfiction essays have been published regularly at Unz ReviewLewRockwellIntrepid Report and CounterCurrents, and his blog, Postcards from the End of America (, is followed by thousands of readers. He has also published widely in Vietnamese.

Table of Contents

Entering Cheyenne 7

Missouri Dope 13

Legging It in Los Angeles 20

Concrete Oakland 27

San Jose Sheen 36

Sleepwalking in Camden 45

Unmaking Chester 55

A Trenton Education 64

Close Call in Norristown 75

Stagnant Riverside 90

Cheap Rooms in Kensington, Philadelphia 100

Saluting the Troops in Marcus Hook 112

Canned Beer and Slim Jim in Vineland 127

Losing It in Joliet 139

Hungry in Chicago? 150

Columbus's Bottoms 158

Abandoned in Bensalem 165

Lower-Class Upper Manhattan 176

Adrift in Levittown 186

Fracking Williston 199

Trashed in Wolf Point 215

Tri-Cities' Dirt 234

Squirrelly Portland 248

Mining Wisconsin 259

Free Grub in Jackson 270

Growing Old in Osceola 279

Squatting in New Orleans 292

Hanging on in Taylor 307

Smug Bubble in Washington, DC 325

Jim Thorpe, War and the Liberal Arts in Carlisle 336

Parched California 347

Dead Centralia 359

Postscript: A Poem, "State of the Union" 367

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