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Occupants Hardcover – October 1, 2011

4.7 out of 5 stars 22 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

“Punk-rock icon. Spoken word poet. Actor. Author. DJ. Is there anything this guy can’t do?”  —Entertainment Weekly


"A whirlwind of gutting impressions to global cultures, Occupants unhinges what we know about being citizens of the world while challenging our conceptions."
YRB Magazine


"It's an impressive collection built entirely out of Rollins' desire to expose readers to corners of the world they may otherwise never see." —Wired.com

About the Author

Henry Rollins joined the Southern California band Black Flag as vocalist in 1981. Upon its demise, he formed Rollins Band, and has been making records, writing books, and touring the world ever since. Rollins has averaged over one hundred shows a year for over 30 years. He also performs in movies and TV shows and hosts a weekly LA radio show.
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 176 pages
  • Publisher: Chicago Review Press (October 1, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1569768153
  • ISBN-13: 978-1569768150
  • Product Dimensions: 0.5 x 11.5 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (22 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #177,709 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Jennie Vasquez on December 27, 2011
Format: Hardcover
I requested this book for Christmas and was delighted to receive it. It will go down as one of my best material gifts ever. There are a number of ways to attack the book. My method was to look at the pictures first and get an initial impression. Then I read the commentary and looked at the photos, and finally I read the back with all the pictures and a description of the photos. Henry describes his photography as that of an amateur well it's a good thing that I'm an amateur viewer because they were spectacular and sincere. The only thing I wish would have been included is a world map with page numbers on the locations spotlighted in the book. A map showing the locations that Henry has traveled would give a perspective of how far and wide his travels have taken him.

This book isn't intended to be a feel good book. Every single person who reads it will get a different message and have a different opinion of the book. If the book doesn't move you in some way, you might want to check your pulse to see if you are still alive. Henry has had opportunities to travel for various reasons and has used those opportunities to educate himself and now the general public. As much as he encourages all of us to travel extensively, most of us will realistically not be able to afford it or have other obligations that don't allow for the same opportunities to travel as Henry. So, we do the best we can and educate ourselves with the best resource we have by allowing Henry to be our guide.

Some will totally agree with the commentary he offers in the book. If you are familiar with Henry's work, you expect nothing less than the shocking and at times harsh and brutal commentary.
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Format: Hardcover
The above is a quote from a spoken word show of his I saw in New Haven, CT. What can I say? The man inspires on many fronts. But this project is different than any Ive seen from him. It is visceral, condemnatory, hopeful, mournful and celebratory at once. Obvious sweat went into this one, and not just because he went to the extremes of the globe to be a witness to places in the world most north americans will never see...its tone is not a tourguide so much as it is emotive...but what else would you expect from this guy?
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Format: Hardcover
I pre-ordered this off his website. It's a joy to read something from Henry anytime. His previous books and his spoken word performances were missing one dimension; something visual to put you in his mindset when reading his thoughts, opinions and experiences. The photographs complete this nicely. This is not some throwaway coffee table book to impress your friends. Many of the entries here are very intense and require reflection to appreciate properly. Henry's concise clarity of writing allows you to absorb his words.
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By jaseagal1 on November 1, 2011
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
In this book Henry Rollins made an attempt to document the results of globalization. It seems that Rollins has been at this for a very long time and it shows in his work. He burned some calories on this one. He has seen more places in the world than most people have a chance to see. If you are familiar with his talking shows then you will recall some of his stories as you look through these photographs. The photos in this book take you through the Middle East, Central Asia, Africa, Ireland, China, Vietnam, and Cambodia. The country of where the photo was taken is included on the page and in the table of contents (there were many places that I didn't list). Some of these pictures should piss you off and disturb you. Not because they have graphic content but because of the conditions that people live in certain places of the world as a direct result of globalization and neo-colonialism. Some of the people in the photos will leave you thinking for awhile. Strength is what ties all of these people together. Not only are they surviving in harsh conditions but they are thriving. They are strong.
What really makes this book for me is the writing that goes along with each photo. Some people may accuse Rollins of being unpatriotic or hating America because of the content of the writing. The writing may offend if the reader is not willing to delve into a deeper and search for Rollins' meaning. Once the reader examines the deeper meaning they will realize that he is a person that loves humanity and wants to see things changed. The writing isn't necessarily a description of the photo. It is more creative and sometimes reaches political commentary. It is pretty easy to see where he stands politically with this writing. Most of it will move you and some of it will disturb you.
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Format: Hardcover
Got an email about this book and pre-ordered right away. Once I got it, I was blown away by the photos. For one of the few times I can recall, Henry's words take a backseat to the images they go with. Brillant shots that get better with each passing page. Of course the commentary that goes with each one provides a just as elegant point of view.
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Format: Hardcover
This book is a journey. It defies classification; it is not a documentary. It is not a fiction. It is a guided missile of anger and experiences--it targets your cerebral cortex and explodes once the target has been achieved. It is an art installation inside your brain. It kicks down your door and makes itself welcome. It doesn't ask permission. It cannot be digested and absorbed as just a "book". It is art, and as all art must, it promotes anger, sadness, discussion, and joy. Mostly it makes you think about your life and how it relates to the life experiences of others.

This book seems to follow a certain formula: Point Henry Rollins towards a country. Let him explore it; he will invariably seek out the least tourist-friendly places he can find. Watch as he tries to digest as many experiences as he can while he's there. When his experiences have sufficiently mixed with his previous travels and the angry bile of his opinions on world politics, he will spew from his gut this beautiful vitriol--it is beautiful because it is truth. Maybe not literal truth, at times, but it is Rollins' truth. Collect it, put it in book form, and voila!

If you like Rollins' spoken word material, you will probably like this book. If don't know his spoken word material, well... try a sample of this book first. You could very well hate it.
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