Tag: Experiment

Feeling like the Internet

What has the advent of the internet meant for the novel? Apart, that is, from its having opened a gaping time-sucking sinkhole at the center of culture? The sweet drip-feed of sentiment and savagery ...

Breaking the ESL Student’s Imagination

The creation of vivid, readable, and faithful translations of literary works into English calls not only for considerable expertise in the original language, but also for consummate writerly skill in ...

Jhumpa Lahiri’s Modernist Turn

Jhumpa Lahiri’s In altre parole announces the birth of a modernist. Written in hard-won Italian and reverberating with the energy of early 20th-century literary experiment, In altre parole describes ...

Sleep and Synchronicity

Two spectacularly haunting new works of fiction share a frightening and resonant premise: a world in which sleep is disappearing. Insomnia has a storied history, of course, as both ailment and plot ...

The Other Side of the Looking Glass

The absent original—a lost “authentic” text, accessible only through its corrupted traces—occupies a central place in the postmodern imagination. Often at the very core of novels, the image of an ...

Toxic Literature

When all that is solid melts into air, the plot thickens. Darragh McKeon’s debut novel, All That Is Solid Melts into Air, and Heather Houser’s first monograph of literary criticism, Ecosickness in ...

Blue Peter: On Peter Gizzi

Brice Marden used beeswax to kill the reflective luster of his triptych color panels. Ad Reinhardt leeched the gloss out of his chromatic blacks. Jasper Johns accreted his white flags with matte ...

Whitman with Quinoa

Although David Copperfield grows up to be a successful novelist, Charles Dickens’s contemporary readers had no reason to suspect the historical author had based parts of his protagonist’s story on ...

Organic Machines

Matthew Barney and Edward Burtynsky are two contemporary artists not typically discussed in the same sentence. Barney is a provocateur known largely for his elaborately staged films filled with ...

Translating The Magic Flute

When I got a call last year about translating a new Magic Flute libretto for an English-language production at the Opera Theatre of St. Louis, I couldn’t have been more thrilled. The Magic Flute had ...

Futurist Cheerfulness

In the domain of games and toys, as in all passéist manifestations, one sees only grotesque imitation, timidity (miniature trains, little cars, dolls that can’t move, cretinous caricatures of ...

Changes

The first thing that happens, when a literary historian starts using computers to think about literature, is that the object of study changes. Not just the tool; the object itself. “The objects ...

The Joys of Multiplicity

Translation contains multitudes. Since there is no one right way to translate most things worth translating—though there are many wrong ways—translation opens up a sphere of multiplicity in which you ...