Experts > Dorian Lynskey

Dorian Lynskey's Top Book Recommendations

Want to know what books Dorian Lynskey recommends on their reading list? We've researched interviews, social media posts, podcasts, and articles to build a comprehensive list of Dorian Lynskey's favorite book recommendations of all time.

Reprint. Originally published: New York: Random House, c1984. less
Recommended by Dorian Lynskey, and 1 others.

Dorian LynskeyThis book shows step by step Lennon’s political awakening in The Beatles, the first time he spoke out against war, the first time he tried to write a protest song and the controversy over the song Revolution, which loads of people on the left hated. (Source)

See more recommendations for this book...

A lively and honest biography that graphically traces the emergence of Victor Jara's theatre, music and poems, and the crucial role they played in the Chilean workers' movement. less
Recommended by Dorian Lynskey, and 1 others.

Dorian LynskeyYes he did. When he was younger, he went to America, visited Berkeley and saw the late 1960s American left at its peak. He thought that the Americans didn’t know how good they had it and were not really up against life and death. (Source)

See more recommendations for this book...


Woody Guthrie

Recommended by Dorian Lynskey, and 1 others.

Dorian LynskeyThere are other Woody Guthrie biographies, but this is written incredibly persuasively. Joe Klein is a very good storyteller. The fact that he has gone on to be a political correspondent for Time and also to write the novel Primary Colors shows just how good he is. It was invaluable research for my Woody Guthrie chapter. (Source)

See more recommendations for this book...


Strange Fruit

The Biography of a Song

Recorded by jazz legend Billie Holiday in 1939, "Strange Fruit" is considered to be the first significant song of the civil rights movement and the first direct musical assault upon racial lynchings in the South. Originally sung in New York's Cafe Society, these revolutionary lyrics take on a life of their own in this revealing account of the song and the struggle it personified. Strange Fruit not only chronicles the civil rights movement from the '30s on, it examines the lives of the beleaguered Billie Holiday and Abel Meeropol, the white Jewish schoolteacher and communist... more
Recommended by Dorian Lynskey, and 1 others.

Dorian LynskeyStrange Fruit [first performed by Billie Holiday in 1939, condemning American racism] was the first time you had a really clear protest message in a song which was performed in nightclubs amid a set of songs which weren’t political. (Source)

See more recommendations for this book...

Can't Stop Won't Stop is a powerful cultural and social history of the end of the American century, and a provocative look into the new world that the hip-hop generation created.

Forged in the fires of the Bronx and Kingston, Jamaica, hip-hop became the Esperanto of youth rebellion and a generation-defining movement. In a post-civil rights era defined by deindustrialization and globalization, hip-hop crystallized a multiracial, polycultural generation's worldview, and transformed American politics and culture. But that epic story has never been told with this kind of...
Recommended by Dorian Lynskey, Doug Rossinow, and 2 others.

Dorian LynskeyThis is not the biography of a single activist. It is a kind of sociopolitical history of hip-hop. It goes back a long way. Chang spends a lot of time describing the rise of gangs from the late 1960s. He tells you a lot about 1970s New York. Hip-hop really started as an artform long before most people outside the Bronx were aware of it. And I loved this social background because it shows that if... (Source)

Doug RossinowHip-hop culture was the authentic cultural expression of young people of color in America at a time when they saw fairly bleak prospects for themselves. (Source)

See more recommendations for this book...

Don't have time to read Dorian Lynskey's favorite books? Read Shortform summaries.

Shortform summaries help you learn 10x faster by:

  • Being comprehensive: you learn the most important points in the book
  • Cutting out the fluff: you focus your time on what's important to know
  • Interactive exercises: apply the book's ideas to your own life with our educators' guidance.