10 books like Nineteen Ways of Looking at Wang Wei

By Eliot Weinberg,

Here are 10 books that authors have personally recommended if you like Nineteen Ways of Looking at Wang Wei. Shepherd is a community of 7,000+ authors sharing their favorite books with the world.

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The Man Who Mistook His Wife for a Hat And Other Clinical Tales

By Oliver Sacks,

Book cover of The Man Who Mistook His Wife for a Hat And Other Clinical Tales

Emo Phillips once said, “I used to think that the brain was the most wonderful organ in my body. Then I realized who was telling me this.” But the brain is fascinating, especially when things start going wrong. Oliver Sacks was a brilliant neurologist who wrote about the cases he’d investigated, including a man who was convinced he had an alien leg, a woman who was unable to perceive anything to her left, and a man who was unable to form new memories. The tales are heartbreaking and fascinating and show us the power of the brain and the danger of assuming in absolute truth.

The Man Who Mistook His Wife for a Hat And Other Clinical Tales

By Oliver Sacks,

Why should I read it?

8 authors picked The Man Who Mistook His Wife for a Hat And Other Clinical Tales as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Celebrating Fifty Years of Picador Books

If a man has lost a leg or an eye, he knows he has lost a leg or an eye; but if he has lost a self - himself - he cannot know it, because he is no longer there to know it.

In this extraordinary book, Dr. Oliver Sacks recounts the stories of patients struggling to adapt to often bizarre worlds of neurological disorder. Here are people who can no longer recognize everyday objects or those they love; who are stricken with violent tics or shout involuntary obscenities, and yet are gifted with…


The Doors of Perception

By Aldous Huxley,

Book cover of The Doors of Perception

I was stunned by this book when I read it nearly fifty years ago, when psychedelics were rarely talked about. Huxley describes in glorious detail the effects of taking 0.4 grams of mescaline one day in 1953. A vase of flowers revealed naked existence; the legs of a chair became miraculous in their tubularity, seconds became centuries, and as for self – was he looking at a chair or was he a chair? I have since explored many psychedelics, as well other ways of inviting extraordinary experiences, and this book remains an inspiration. 

The Doors of Perception

By Aldous Huxley,

Why should I read it?

5 authors picked The Doors of Perception as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Discover this profound account of Huxley's famous experimentation with mescalin that has influenced writers and artists for decades.

'Concise, evocative, wise and, above all, humane, The Doors of Perception is a masterpiece' Sunday Times

In 1953, in the presence of an investigator, Aldous Huxley took four-tenths of a gram of mescalin, sat down and waited to see what would happen. When he opened his eyes everything, from the flowers in a vase to the creases in his trousers, was transformed. Huxley described his experience with breathtaking immediacy in The Doors of Perception.

In its sequel Heaven and Hell, he goes…


Mind

By John R. Searle,

Book cover of Mind: A Brief Introduction

A concise introduction to the beating heart of the ancient mind-body problem – consciousness and free will. Searle, famous for his Chinese Room argument that is featured in the book, engages with contemporary scientific theories of consciousness, which is uncommon for philosophers. What is even rarer is that Searle professes himself perplexed when it comes to reconciling his feelings of acting freely with the laws of physics that appear to rule out free will.

Mind

By John R. Searle,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Mind as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

"The philosophy of mind is unique among contemporary philosophical subjects," writes John Searle, "in that all of the most famous and influential theories are false." One of the world's most eminent thinkers, Searle dismantles these theories as he presents a vividly written, comprehensive introduction to the mind. He begins with a look at the twelve problems of philosophy of mind-which he calls "Descartes and Other Disasters"-problems which he returns to throughout
the volume, as he illuminates such topics as materialism, consciousness, the mind-body problem, intentionality, mental causation, free will, and the self. The book offers a refreshingly direct and engaging…


The Astonishing Hypothesis

By Francis Crick,

Book cover of The Astonishing Hypothesis: The Scientific Search for the Soul

This book, by the co-discoverer of the molecular structure of DNA, helped kick off the modern research enterprise that seeks to track and identify the neuronal correlates of consciousness, that is the footprints of consciousness in the brain. Crick argues that for tactical reasons, scientists should focus on more accessible aspects of consciousness, such as visual awareness, and provides an easy-to-follow introduction into the mammalian brain.

The Astonishing Hypothesis

By Francis Crick,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Astonishing Hypothesis as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Applying the methodology of science to the search for the soul, the winner of the Nobel Prize for the discovery of DNA explores the fundamental questions of human consciousness, challenging science, philosophy, and religion. Reprint. 25,000 first printing.


How to Grow Your Own Poem

By Kate Clanchy,

Book cover of How to Grow Your Own Poem

Even if you don’t want to be a poet, there’s something about playing with poetic form that I think is useful to any writer because it enables you to explore the use of rhythm, metaphor, simile and other ways of honing your consciousness into literary and written form. It demands specificity of description and uniqueness of voice, and Kate Clanchy’s book - she is herself a published poet, writer but also a teacher - gets to the nub of it through examples and exercise, to emerge a more fluent and confident writer, and in whichever form you choose.

How to Grow Your Own Poem

By Kate Clanchy,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked How to Grow Your Own Poem as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Do you want to write a poem? This book will show you 'how to grow your own poem' . . .

Kate Clanchy has been teaching people to write poetry for more than twenty years. Some were old, some were young; some were fluent English speakers, some were not. None of them were confident to start with, but a surprising number went to win prizes and every one finished up with a poem they were proud of, a poem that only they could have written - their own poem.

Kate's big secret is a simple one: is to share other…


Whereas

By Layli Long Soldier,

Book cover of Whereas: Poems

Wars take a long time to end. Work is done to bury the loss, grief, and guilt described above as quickly as possible. Oftentimes the forces that stand to profit from this forgetting succeed, except among those groups which are either ignored or for whom the loss is too deep. What Layli Long Soldier’s brilliant Whereas discloses is how the acts of government, the papers generated like planks over a well, seek to hide that grief and loss, and how those groups might reclaim the stories those papers hope to disappear. 

Whereas

By Layli Long Soldier,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Whereas as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

WHEREAS confronts the coercive language of the United States government in its responses, treaties, and apologies to Native American peoples and tribes, and reflects that language in its officiousness and duplicity back on its perpetrators. Through a virtuosic array of short lyrics, prose poems, longer narrative sequences, resolutions, and disclaimers, Layli Long Soldier has created a brilliantly innovative text to examine histories, landscapes, her own writing, and her predicament inside national affiliations.


The Thing in the Gap-Stone Stile

By Alice Oswald,

Book cover of The Thing in the Gap-Stone Stile

Alice Oswald is one of our best living poets, renowned for her nature poetry and particularly her long poem about the River Dart in Somerset. I love this first collection, full of heart-stopping attention to detail and transcendental shiver. She follows very much in the tradition of our great poets writing about nature. Try the poem "Mountains" for a Wordsworthian sense of a hidden, almost pantheistic presence in the world. 

The Thing in the Gap-Stone Stile

By Alice Oswald,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Thing in the Gap-Stone Stile as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

This is Alice Oswald's first book of poems. More confident and achieved than many first collections, it shows her writing in an already distinct voice. The poems are intensely musical: she recites them from memory. Influenced by the rhythms of Hopkins, they speak passionately of nature and love. They have a religious sense of mystery, and try to express the intangible in marvellously vivid language. A long poem, `The Wise Men of Gotham', which makes up the second part of the book, is, by contrast, a version of the folk-legend about the three men who went to sea in a…


The Wanderings of Oisin

By W.B. Yeats,

Book cover of The Wanderings of Oisin: And Other Poems

Yeats is one of my favourite poets, and while you may not associate him with fantasy, he did write some extraordinarily beautiful poems that are retellings of Irish folk tales and legends. Teeming with faeries, immortals, and other fey creatures, these are poems in the tradition of the great Romantic poets such as Byron, Shelley, Keats, and Tennyson. The titular poem is only one of many beautiful fantasy poems in this collection.

The Wanderings of Oisin

By W.B. Yeats,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Wanderings of Oisin as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.


You Get So Alone at Times That It Just Makes Sense

By Charles Bukowski,

Book cover of You Get So Alone at Times That It Just Makes Sense

Bukowski had a unique perspective on the world, and anyone who has read his work would most definitely agree. This book, which is a collection of some of Bukowski’s greatest pieces in my opinion, has a way of resonating with you on a personal level. Whether it be gaining a newfound perspective on the animals that scurry around our yards, or of a gambler wasting away in a casino on a Monday afternoon, Bukowski has a knack for bringing up the world’s problems in a way that is both depressing and humorous at the same time, while also giving peeks at his wit and charm as well.

You Get So Alone at Times That It Just Makes Sense

By Charles Bukowski,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked You Get So Alone at Times That It Just Makes Sense as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Charles Bukowski examines cats and his childhood in You Get So Alone at Times, a book of poetry that reveals his tender side. He delves into his youth to analyze its repercussions.


Ink Earl

By Susan Holbrook,

Book cover of Ink Earl

I truly never thought I’d laugh out loud at an erasure poem. Then Ink Earl came along. Holbrook starts with a hundred copies of the original fifties ad pitch for the Pink Pearl eraser—get it yet?—and hacks away different parts of each, yielding a series of meditations and diatribes and bouts of spirited near-nonsense. The poems are consistently clever delights, and the project’s conceptual wholeness is icing on the cake.

Ink Earl

By Susan Holbrook,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Ink Earl as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Shortlisted for the ReLit 2022 Poetry Award

ink earl takes the popular subgenre of erasure poetry to its illogical conclusion.

Starting with ad copy that extols the iconic Pink Pearl eraser, Holbrook erases and erases, revealing more and more. Rubbing out different words from this decidedly non-literary, noncanonical source text, she was left with the promise of "100 essays" and set about to find them. Among her discoveries are queer love poems, art projects, political commentary, lunch, songs, and entire extended families.

The absurdity of the constraint lends itself to plenty of fun and funny, while reminding us of truths…


5 book lists we think you will like!

Interested in poetry, or by neuroscientist, and the Tang dynasty?

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