Quick Reads: “The Dylanologists” by David Kinney


The Dylanologists

The Dylanologists

By David Kinney

SIMON & SCHUSTER

It seems like everybody and their dog has a book about Bob Dylan, but The Dylanologists turns the spotlight on his most obsessive fans instead. Journalist David Kinney takes us into a world of zealous collectors who will snap up anything the great man has touched, nerds who obsessively trade and catalog bootleg recordings, and code breakers who pore over every quote and lyric for meaning. We learn about the travails of dedicating one’s life to an inaccessible hero and the emotional toll of having that hero regularly reinvent our favorite parts of himself. Through it all runs a tension between the Dylanologist’s compulsion to understand the “real” Bob and the artist’s steadfast desire to remain an enigma.

This review originally appeared in our May/June 2014 issue of Mother Jones.

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THE BIG PICTURE

You expect the big picture, and it's our job at Mother Jones to give it to you. And right now, so many of the troubles we face are the making not of a virus, but of the quest for profit, political or economic (and not just from the man in the White House who could have offered leadership and comfort but instead gave us bleach).

In "News Is Just Like Waste Management," we unpack what the coronavirus crisis has meant for journalism, including Mother Jones’, and how we can rise to the challenge. If you're able to, this is a critical moment to support our nonprofit journalism with a donation: We've scoured our budget and made the cuts we can without impairing our mission, and we hope to raise $400,000 from our community of online readers to help keep our big reporting projects going because this extraordinary pandemic-plus-election year is no time to pull back.

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