Friday, July 30, 2010

In the opinion of ex-professor of literarture

Amis, McEwan and Rushdie are like "prep school boys showing off".

Monday, July 26, 2010

Arundhati Roy in Forbe World's most inspiring women list!

What gall Forbe World clubs Arundhati Roy with actor Angelina Jolie, former US secretary of state Condoleezza Rice, first lady Michelle Obama and author J.K. Rowling! Even Oprah Winfrey, the topper of the list, is a mismatch when compared to Arundhati!

I wonder how Arundhati could be a role model for Forbe World's business-savvy readers.

Yet another ploy to suck in the great-look author by the corporate world?

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Post-literate age?

"It's not a disaster that there are no good novels being written. There are wonderful novels written. It's that our brains are being disassembled right now and being put back together in a whole different shape, and that is not going to be conducive to reading a 300-page thing that doesn't have any links."

Thursday, July 22, 2010

David Mitchell interview

In the Vanity Fair, John Lopez interviews David Mitchell.

Q:James Wood in the New Yorker was describing your books and he jokingly came up with the phrase post-postmodernism. If there were such a thing as post-postmodern literature, what do you think that might be?

A:Oddly enough, I’m not sure if novelists are the best people to ask whither-the-novel questions. For me, it’s a little like I’m a duckbilled platypus and I’m being asked a question about taxonomy. You won’t get much of an answer out of a platypus because they’re busy going about their business digging tunnels, catching fish, and having sex. You really have to ask a critic, or a taxonomist. I feel like I should have a pithy answer because I’m a novelist and you’re asking a question about the future of the novel, but the biggest question I ever get to is, “How can I make this damned book work?” I rarely ever put my head above the rampart and see where this big lumbering behemoth called global literature is going.

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Friday, July 16, 2010

Faulkner online

In the late 1950s, William Faulkner spent two years as the writer-in-residence at the University of Virginia, where he talked about his fiction, did some readings, and interacted with students. Now all of these have been digitalised and published online.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Saw Wai interview

In The Irrawaddy, Aye Chan Myate interviews Saw Wai, the artist and poet, who was released from prison recently after spending more than two years behind bars for publishing a poem in “The Love Journal” that contained the hidden words: “Power-hungry, insane Gen Than Shwe.

Q: In Burma, artists are not able to write about certain topics or use certain types of images.

A: Overcoming such difficulties is a big burden. In every era under any kind of government, artists must work to create new things that speak the truth. If we are united, one day things will get better.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

To Kill A Mockingbird :50th anniversary of a no-publicity bestseller

In the Independent Helen Taylor re-evaluates Harper Lee's only novel.

Harper Lee observed clearly and wrote prophetically. For all the novel's occasional sentimentality and whimsy, she produced a powerful indictment of American racial history at a crucial moment, one which remains relevant to today's multi-cultural US. This book deserves its long-standing success.

Monday, July 5, 2010

Salman Rushdie interview

In the Hindu Literary review,Gauri Viswanathan interviews Salman Rushdie.

I think relativism is the dangerous death of liberalism. If you will justify anything that anybody does because it comes from their tradition, it means you abdicate your moral sense and you cease to be a moral being. Going back to the article you mentioned which talks about the question of women, if you were to take religion away as the justification, nobody would tolerate that for a minute. The kinds of limitations that women have been placed under and the crimes against women in the name of religion are so profound, and yet somehow people don't get as agitated about them as when the same things are done by somebody who wasn't using God as the reason. That seems like nonsense to me.

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Whither Indian publishing?

Aditya Sudarshan has a thoughtful article Indian publishing needs to get less fun
in the Hindu Literary Review.

In the world of Indian English publishing, kitsch has begun to dominate the mainstream. Penguin India publishes ‘Metro Reads', books that they call ‘fun, feisty, fast'; Random House India produces the ‘Kama Kahani', a series of Indianised Mills and Boons; Hachette India openly states that it cares most about commercial thrillers; and with its latest, highly-marketed release, Johnny Gone Down, HarperCollins India seems to be headed in the same direction. These are all books that openly disclaim any particular literary merit. They are projected instead as ‘fun' reads — with the implication that only a killjoy could possibly protest them.

Saturday, July 3, 2010

Lit News: H.G. Alder's "Panorama" to be republished

Good news for literature lovers: to mark the occasion of the 100th anniversary of the birth of H.G. Adler, his autobiographical novel "Panorama" is going to be republished. Rated as "among the greats of world literature", Panorama was written way back in 1948, and it took twenty years before a publisher had the guts to publish it.

Friday, July 2, 2010

Ilana Hammerman interview

Haaretz publishes an interesting and lengthy interview of editor and writer Ilana Hammerman.

Society has taken in so many innovative things that it has become immune. No one is knocked off their feet anymore - not by art and not by reality. Once people were shocked by Dadaism, for example. Now, if they see a toilet in the museum, so what? After all, they show us dead bodies and mangled limbs - what isn't shown and visible everywhere? Civilized society can digest anything.

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