Source: AMC/New York Public Library. Found at http://mashable.com/2015/03/05/mad-men-reading-list/
Source: AMC/New York Public Library. Found at http://mashable.com/2015/03/05/mad-men-reading-list/
  • I read Confessions of an Advertising Man by David Ogilvy last year after remembering that Roger talked about the book when he was writing his own. Ogilvy’s book shows that beneath all the drinking and schmoozing, plenty of work did go on at his agency.
  • Ayn Rand – Atlas Shrugged. Cooper encourages Don to read this because he thinks Don is self-interested like Rand’s characters. [Expect a post or two about Atlas here soon…I read the book in January and while I don’t like it, I can’t help but think about it.]
    • The Fountainhead is also relevant here, for Don Draper and Howard Roark view their work as extensions of their being. Both characters have their maverick and iconoclastic tendencies as well.
  • Frank O’Hara – Meditations in an Emergency. Don reads the “catastrophe of my personality” line comes from a poem here. A slim but dense volume.
  • Mad Men Unbuttoned has a good section on the literature of the show as well as other works that shed light on Mad Men’s characters and settings.
    • I highly recommend John Cheever’s short stories “The Swimmer,” “The Five Forty-Eight,” and “The Country Husband” because they’re intriguing slices of American suburban life. Several Mad Men episodes seem to have been inspired by these three stories.
  • The Man in the Grey Flannel Suit by Sloane Wilson is something I need to read again.
  • Ditto for William Whyte’s The Organization Man.

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