« Previous Month
Next Month »
"There's nothing more unrealistic than having the mysteries of life laid bare and exposed. So much of supposed realism actually traffics in the stalest of narrative clichés -- plot devices that feel lifted from the cheapest of dramas. I don't mind narrative clichés -- how could I, given my work? -- but it drives me nuts when it's called realism. I was just reading reviews of Richard Price's most recent novel, which I enjoyed very much, and one by one the critics called the dialog realistic, when it's clearly the result of careful styling. Realistic dialog would have all sorts of hemming and hawing and redundancies."
"I think most of us believed in the early ’70s and even back to the late ’60s that our conception of liberalism in America was actually complemented by our Zionism. Israel standing up after the Holocaust was seen as a kind of Spain of the ’50s. And the wars that Israel fought were like the Spanish Civil War of the ’30s. We saw Israel holding up a conception of the dignities of the rights of man. And doing it against backward forces... The problem is this willful ignorance. In order for American Jews to sustain this resonance between their own liberalism and their conception of Israel in the region, they have got to not let in some things."
There’s no right way to translate a masterpiece, but there seem to be millions of wrong ways. You can distort the author’s complicated meanings, leaving readers confused and misinformed. You can make a brilliant work bad, and (possibly), a mediocre work great. You have a strange power, like an editor or literary executor, only more acrobatic.
Anne Carson is one of those rare MacArthur Fellows who deserves to be called a genius. Read her, and you might actually be reading Euripides, unless, to paraphrase Borges, the original is unfaithful to the translation.
Doing Anthropology is about taking the time to observe, to listen, to ask, to probe, to figure out things about human dynamics (or human fossils or humans’ closest relatives or humans’ archaeological past) that often aren’t what they seem on the surface.
Anthropology for Dummies strives for the surface.
Barbara J. King
In our modern world of prevalent cynicism, cheap thrills and fast-living, few believe in magical transformations -- but we still want to escape the confines of everyday living.
The three Maries are redefining the genre, transporting us to a new place from which to view the problems at the heart of society, with a mixture of humour and despair, taking us ever closer to defining what Darrieussecq calls "the abyss."
C L Jansen
"In the book I sprinkle the folklore in liberally with the science, because a little bit of either goes a long way. But we now have solid data on the associations between schizophrenia, on the one hand, and famine and older fathers and drink, which is what I call my three-legged stool theory of Irish schizophrenia. Famine doubles and can nearly triple the risk of schizophrenia developing in children. Older fathers also can double to triple the risks. It wasn't the fairies that drove the Irish mad. It was hunger and old sperm."
"How words are best or most effectively used inside digital writing remains to be seen -- not in the sense that there is a best, but in the sense of best practices, as taught in design schools. Some think the best uses will emerge with regard to SMS texting, or with regard to works made collaboratively by large groups of people. Many experiments of this kind have been tried, fail, tried again, fail better...."
"What happens that moment you’re about to do something shameful and you catch a glimpse of yourself in the mirror. What happens there? Is that a supernatural moment? Is that a realistic moment? You catch a glimpse of yourself in the mirror and say, Am I going to be that guy? That girl?"