On language invention. To desire some other perfect language is at once to acknowledge and to overlook the miraculousness of what we have.
On two tales of racial metamorphosis, salted or sugared, one hundred years apart.
He spoke of painting like a starving man speaks of food. On Józef Czapski, Memories of Starobielsk and the art of observation.
The first word I ever wrote was stsikukha: « pisser ». This is how my nanny Frosya called me to my face. On poetry and pathos in a bastard tongue.
Fernanda Melchor’s prose hits you square in the face, but its lyricism works differently in Spanish. On Veracruzano modernism, lyrical slang, and worlds so new that style falls apart.
On pregnant silences, and how to abort them — via Jane Austen’s Lady Susan, Whit Stillman’s Love & Friendship and our own manners & morals.
On Curzio Malaparte’s Europe — and ours. The midcentury novelist read anew, on war’s aftermath and transatlantic romance. What was, or is, « postwar Europe », anyway?
Imagine your therapist assigned you to write your autobiography, after which you decided you were cured, so your therapist published it as revenge. Zeno’s Conscience turns 99.
Time? For? Socialism? What happened when Thomas Piketty descended from the elegant mathematical Olympus of economic theory into the muck of political and economic crises, public debates, social confrontations, and competing visions of progress?
Пространство—это ключевое слово в понимании литературной и философической истории России. Оксана Васякина переделывает русское пространство—и русский роман—для женских миров.
« Space », or prostranstvo, is a key word for understanding the literary and philosophical history of Russia. Oksana Vasyakina’s Rana (Wound), a Siberian road novel, remakes the Russian landscape and the Russian novel for women’s worlds. It renders prostranstvo unruly, polysemous, queer.
« What if all fictional characters from novels continue to dwell somewhere, just like the dead? » Sewn together, the fragmented narratives of Daniela Hodrová’s City of Torment (Trýznivé město) make something deeply European.
Maggie Nelson’s On Freedom and Lea Ypi’s Free spoke past one another from half a world away. But both ask whether freedoms mean anything if they are not practiced in public, and if they are not passed on — and whether the word « freedom » means anything at all.
Україна не стала епіцентром світової історії раптово. Україна стала епіцентром світової історії знову.
What does modern mean? In Brazil, it often meant an embrace of newness as the possibility of reinvention. In Modernity in Black and White: Art and Image, Race and Identity in Brazil, 1890-1945, Rafael Cardoso unravels the myth of 1922.