Role Models - John Waters

John Waters, cult filmmaker and curator of a “filth empire,” is at his outrageous, provocative best in the ten essays of Role Models (Farrar, Straus and Giroux, $15), covering topics including Johnny Mathis, bibliophiles, pornography, and Tennessee Williams. Waters excels at collecting the flotsam and jetsam lurking just under the surface of good taste, but Role Models takes a few reflective turns as well, most notably in the lengthy and thoughtful “Leslie,” an essay about his long-time friend, Leslie Van Houten (yes, that Leslie Van Houten). Here Waters raises important questions about the concept of justice: can someone who has committed murder ever pay her debt to society? Is criminal rehabilitation possible? What role does forgiveness have? In true Waters style, the next piece, about the anti-fashion designer Rei Kawakubo, makes a tongue-in-cheek comment on Che Guevara’s homophobia: “His iconic look… proves all ideology can be embraced if the leader dresses well.” Thankfully for us, Waters leaves the boring navy blazer on the rack.
Role Models Cover Image
ISBN: 9780374532864
Availability: Not On Our Shelves—Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Farrar, Straus and Giroux - April 26th, 2011

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