Air Traffic: A Memoir of Ambition and Manhood in America by Gregory Pardlo

By Gregory Pardlo

From the Pulitzer Prize-winning poet, his first paintings of prose: a deeply felt memoir of a family's bonds and a meditation on race, habit, fatherhood, ambition, and American culture

The Pardlos have been a typical, middle-class African American family members dwelling in a brand new Jersey Levittown: charismatic Gregory Sr., an air site visitors controller, his spouse, and their sons, bookish Greg Jr. and musical-talent Robbie. but if "Big Greg" loses his activity after partaking within the specialist Air site visitors Controllers Strike of 1981, he turns into a upset, poisonous, looming presence within the household--and a robust rival for younger Greg. whereas great Greg succumbs to habit and exhausts the family's cash, Greg Jr. rebels--he joins a boot camp for potential Marines, follows a lady to Denmark, drops out of school many times, and yields to alcoholism. Years later, he falls for a gorgeous, no-nonsense girl named Ginger and turns into a mum or dad himself. Then, he ultimately grapples with the impossible to resist but ruinous legacy of masculinity he inherited from his father. In chronicling his route to restoration and adulthood--Gregory Pardlo offers us a compassionate, loving ode to his father, to fatherhood, and to the frustrating-yet-redemptive ties of relations, in addition to a scrupulous, searing exam of ways African American manhood is formed via modern American life.

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