Download How to Disappear: Notes on Invisibility in a Time of Transparency Audiobook

How to Disappear: Notes on Invisibility in a Time of Transparency Audiobook, by Akiko Busch Extended Sample Click for printable size audiobook cover
Author: Akiko Busch Narrator: Gabra Zackman Publisher: Penguin Random House Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: February 2019 ISBN: 9781984838759
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Vivid, surprising, and utterly timely, Akiko Busch's HOW TO DISAPPEAR explores the idea of invisibility in nature, art, and science, in search of a more joyful and peaceful way of living in today's increasingly surveilled and publicity-obsessed world

In our increasingly networked and image-saturated lives, the notion of disappearing has never been both more enchanting and yet fanciful. Today, we are relentlessly encouraged, even conditioned, to reveal, share, and self-promote. The pressure to be public comes not just from our peers, but vast and pervasive technology companies, which want to profit from patterns in our behavior. A lifelong student and observer of the natural world, Busch sets out to explore her own uneasiness with this arrangement, and what she senses is a widespread desire for a less scrutinized way of life--for invisibility. Writing in rich painterly detail about her own life, her family, and some of the world's most exotic and remote places--from the Cayman Islands to Iceland--she savors the pleasures of being unseen. Discovering and dramatizing a wonderful range of ways of disappearing, from virtual reality goggles that trick the wearer into believing her body has disappeared and to the way Virginia Woolf's fictional Mrs. Dalloway feels a flickering of personhood as an older woman, Busch deliberates on subjects new and old with equal sensitivity and incisiveness.

A unique and exhilarating accomplishment, HOW TO DISAPPEAR is a shimmering collage of poetry, cinema, memoir, myth, and much more, which overturns the dangerous modern assumption that somehow fame and visibility equate to success and happiness. Busch presents a field guide to invisibility, reacquainting us with the merits of the inconspicuousness, and finds genuine alternatives to the typical life of perpetual exposure. Accessing timeless truths in order to speak to our most urgent contemporary problems, she inspires us to develop a deeper appreciation for personal privacy in a vast and invasive world. Download and start listening now!

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Quotes & Awards

  • What a perfect moment for this beautiful and affecting book. Aki Busch writes with grace, humor and breathtaking precision about the unsung virtues of blending in rather than standing out, of finding our most essential selves by losing our need to be perpetually seen. Weaving together science, myth and storytelling, anecdotes from Iceland to Grand Cayman Island, the Bay of Fundy to a virtual reality studio in Brooklyn, she reminds us that it is often in those all-consuming moments of losing ourselves—in love, in work, in the natural world—that we see and feel most acutely, that how to be depends on knowing both how to be fully present and how to disappear. This is a book that will be passed from friend to friend like a secret handshake--a must read. Andrea Barnet, author of Visionary Women
  • Kafka dreamt of being a waiter. He wanted to be present but invisible. Akiko Busch has illuminated this essential part of being. Examining with a clear lyricism, what it means to protect yourself from too much visibility. Her work offers a much needed sense of balance in a time of turmoil.  A reminder that we can shift and change and that there is such a thing as privacy. Maira Kalman, author and illustrator of Beloved Dog and The Principles of Uncertainty
  • What a stunning, intelligent book! And timely in these times of endless exposure. Akiko Busch leaves no pebble unturned in her contemplation of invisibility in all of its myriad guises, many of which will surprise you, and in the course of things her contemplation becomes a search for one’s place in nothing less than the flow of life itself. Mary Ruefle, author of My Private Property and Madness, Rack, and Honey  
  • What a mesmerizing, unexpected, and hopeful book this is. A wondrous magic hat of revelations on the power of the unseen – to disappear into, lose oneself in, and emerge transformed, with new hope for the possibility of a surer, quieter, more humane way of being. Jennifer Ackerman, author of The Genius of Birds

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About the Narrator

Gabra Zackman is an actress, author, and narrator who has won several AudioFile Earphones Awards. She was educated at Northwestern University. A classically trained actress, she has appeared in theaters all over the country as well as on film and television.