reading & viewing list

 This reading & viewing list–in progress–is comprised of books and films that are our personal favorites, as well as significant cultural and/or historical portrayals of New York City. 
(Photo, Library of Congress)

Fiction (listed chronologically by publication date)

Henry James, Washington Square (1880)
Stephen Crane, Maggie, a Girl of the Streets (1893)
Theodore Dreiser, Sister Carrie (1900)
Edith Wharton, House of Mirth (1905)
James Weldon Johnson, The Autobiography of an Ex-Colored Man (1912)
Edith Wharton, The Age of Innocence (1920)
John Dos Passos, Manhattan Transfer (1926)
Michael Gold, Jews Without Money (1930)
Dawn Powell, Turn, Magic Wheel (1936)
Pietro di Donato, Christ in Concrete (1939)
Betty Smith, A Tree Grows in Brooklyn (1943)
Ann Petry, The Street (1946)
Nora Johnson, The World of Henry Orient (1956)
Rona Jaffe, The Best of Everything (1958)
Thomas Pynchon, V. (1963)
Ira Levin, Rosemary’s Baby (1967)
Sue Kaufman, Diary of a Mad Housewife (1967)
Jack Finney, Time and Again (1970)
Gordon Parks, Shannon (1981)
Mark Helprin, Winters’ Tale (1983)
Jay McInerney, Bright Lights, Big City (1984)
John Guare, Six Degrees of Separation (1990) (play)
Clare Messud, The Emperor’s Children (2006)
Teju Cole, Open City (2011)


James Weldon Johnson, Black Manhattan (1930)
E.B. White, Here is New York (1948)  
Helene Hanff, Apple of My Eye (1977)
Stephen Birmingham, Life at the Dakota: New York’s Most Unusual Address (1979)

Kathy Peiss, Cheap Amusements: Working Women and Leisure in Turn-of-the-Century New York (1986)
Luc Sante, Low Life: Lures and Snares of Old New York (1991) 
Mary McCarthy, Intellectual Memoirs, New York, 1936-1938 (1993)
Helene Hanff, Letter from New York (1995)
Mary Cantwell, Manhattan When I was Young (1996)
Adam Gopnik, Through the Children’s Gate: A Home in New York (2006)
Stephen Gaines, The Sky’s the Limit: Passion and Property in Manhattan (2006) 
Eric W. Sanderson, Mannahatta: A Natural History of New York City (2009) 
William Grimes, Appetite City: A Culinary History of New York (2009)

The Clock (1945) 
Portrait of Jennie (1948)
On the Town (1949) 
Rear Window (1954)
The Best of Everything (1959)
Shadows (1959)
The Apartment (1960)
Breakfast at Tiffany’s (1961)
Sunday in New York (1963)
Rosemary’s Baby (1968)
Midnight Cowboy (1969)
John and Mary (1969)
The Out-of-Towners (1970)
Taxi Driver (1976) 
Network (1976)
Annie Hall (1977)
The Goodbye Girl (1977)
Manhattan (1979)
Fame (1980)
After Hours (1985)
Wall Street (1987)
Do the Right Thing (1989)
Slaves of New York (1989)
The Visitor (2007)
Starting Out in the Evening (2007)
The Vanishing City (2010)