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St. Marks Is Dead

The Many Lives of America’s Hippest Street


Ada Calhoun (Author)

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A vibrant history of three hallowed Manhattan blocks—the epicentre of American cool.

St. Marks Place in New York City has spawned countless artistic and political movements. Here Frank O’Hara caroused, Emma Goldman plotted and the Velvet Underground wailed. Ada Calhoun tells the “Fascinating” (Village Voice) many-layered history of the street—from its beginnings as a pear orchard to today’s hipster playground—organised around the pivotal moments when critics declared “St. Marks is dead”.

In this “timely, provocative, and stylishly written book.” (The Atlantic), enriched by interviews and rare images, Calhoun profiles iconic characters from W.H. Auden to Abbie Hoffman, from Keith Haring to the Beastie Boys. St. Marks has variously been an elite address, an immigrants’ haven, a mafia warzone, a hippie paradise and a backdrop to the film Kids—but it has always been a place that outsiders call home.


“... enjoyable and informative...” — International Times

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Is This America's Coolest Street?

The Guardian review by Paul Owen