Posts tagged “literature”

  1. I trust book buyers to read beyond their immediate experience, beyond their census box. This is what readers have done since literacy became commonplace, so I don’t know why that’s a great leap for our industry today. But I still hear it all the time: “Does this group buy books?” “Is this group enough of an audience?” I hear real fear in that question.

  2. The process of reconstructing the past is fascinating, and that’s why I want to spend time working through its complexities and writing history myself. But if I honestly recall what drew me to reading about the past in the first place, it is fiction. Specifically, children’s historical fiction presented as the diaries of girls my age, living through various periods in Canadian and world history.

  3. This actor is playing a very specific version of Mr. Darcy. He is not, especially, Austen’s Darcy, who is famously awkward and impolite. The Jane Austen Centre’s Darcy is the Darcy from really bad fanfiction.

  4. We want to be able to count the seven gables, walk through the Sleepy Hollow Cemetery, locate the port that Captain Ahab sailed from, and verify whether the author got it right, whether the storyworld resembles our own.

  5. I had never before read anyone who understood the particular kind of fury I felt -- a fury that felt like being a teenaged girl, and being young and queer, and being hated. There was something in everyone in that book that I loved and recognised: Ishmael’s transformation -- his neediness and then “cool collected dive at death”; Queequeg’s skill; Starbuck’s terror. And in Ahab, I found the kind of madness -- almost completely forged of anger…

  6. While there was plenty I could learn from Anne Shirley or Harriet the Spy, I always longed to read about an actual tomboy like me – no long braids, no puffed sleeves, no growing up into a swan after an ugly duckling childhood. As a young reader, I always wanted a role model who didn’t grow out of her awkward phrase, who didn’t eventually find that it all just fell into place – because I…

  7. I imagine Geach and Wallace in the lecture halls, in the libraries – the famous Radcliffe Camera at the Bodleian, maybe, not so different from the room where I read their work. They’re greedily soaking up Western literature. They’re searching for themselves, but they keep finding the same stupid story: a woman experiences a sliver of life, then kills herself because of a man.

  8. I count my MFA as one of the best things I’ve ever done. Yet sometimes I do find myself wondering: Could I have found what I was looking for some other way? How did it work, exactly, in the age of patrons and salons?

    As I pursued this line of inquiry, the story of Hayford Hall came to light.

  9. Disappointed hopes
    Navy fever
    Northern air
    This last winter was too hard for young Master Jamesington
    Unanswered letters

  10. Celeste Ng is the author of the novel Everything I Never Told You, which was a New York Times bestseller, a New York Times Notable Book of 2014, Amazon’s #1 Best Book of 2014, and named a best book of the year by over a dozen publications. Everything I Never Told You was also the winner of the Asian/Pacific American Award for Literature and the ALA’s Alex Award, and was a finalist for numerous awards, including…

  11. I've loved Alexander Chee's writing for some time, from the powerful essays that served as my introduction to his work to his debut novel, Edinburgh. Chee won a Whiting Award for Edinburgh, and is a recipient of the NEA fellowship in fiction and residencies from the MacDowell Colony, Ledig House, and Civitella Ranieri. His writing has appeared in The New York Times Book Review, Tin House, Slate, and on NPR. The Toast asked Alexander to talk with us about writing, teaching, changes…

  12. There are few things a biracial 16-year-old growing up in Southern California has in common with Nathaniel Hawthorne, author of The Scarlet Letter. There are even fewer experiences in the life of that 16-year-old that have much if anything to do with the events that unfold in that novel. So it’s unsurprising that I have never liked The Scarlet Letter. Like many people who grew up in the American school system, I first read Hawthorne’s…

  13. Karissa Chen previously participated in "After Amy Tan: An Asian American Literature Roundtable" at The Toast. Last July, I added a new feature to The Hyphen Reader, a monthly e-newsletter I curate in conjunction with Hyphen, the Asian/Pacific Islander American (APIA) magazine where I am fiction and poetry editor. The new feature was called “Fresh Ink.” Its goal was simple—I wanted to list new literature…

  14. I learned about Meredith Talusan's fascinating life and trajectory through none other than the wonderful world of Twitter. Not only are we both Comparative Literature nerds, but we also are deeply involved in thinking about selfhood and all that it entails. 

    Tell me a little about yourself. You have such a rich history, both personally and educationally. Considering your background, what drew you to the visual arts as well as literature?

  15. Cathy Linh Che is the author of Split (Alice James Books) and the Managing Director at Kundiman. Karissa Chen is the author of Of Birds and Lovers, a chapbook of short fiction, and is the fiction & poetry editor at Hyphen magazine. Ari Laurel is a blog editor for Hyphen, and native Californian, getting her MFA in fiction writing in Montana. Christine Hyung-Oak Lee is at work on a memoir and novel; she is the fiction editor at…