‘My adult life can be divided into two distinct parts,’ Eula Biss writes, ‘the time before I owned a washing machine and the time after.’ Having just purchased her first home, she now embarks on a roguish and risky self-audit of the value system she has bought into. The result is a radical interrogation of work, leisure and capitalism. Described by the New York Times as a writer who ‘advances from all sides, like a chess player’, Biss brings her approach to the lived experience of capitalism. Playfully ranging from IKEA to Beyonce to Pokemon, across bars and laundromats and universities, she asks, of both herself and her class, ‘In what have we invested?’.
‘Having and Being Had offers us a probing tour of capitalism and class that sidesteps posturing and jargon in favor of clarity, humility, and incitement.’ Maggie Nelson
‘An endlessly absorbing examination of class, our collusion in capitalism and economic inequality. Biss’ signature voice is central, pivoting around Woolf, Baldwin and Didion, while proving herself to an extraordinary essayist of their ilk.’SINEAD GLEESON