On Fiction

davis-cat

50 Shades of Lydia Davis

“Sex is the brightest thread in the thick, strangely cut fabric of our lives; we can never know what it means, but we’re always sure we’re certain.” —Edmund White There are…

baker

Missing the Mark: Nell Zink’s Racial Fluidity

When Jess Row’s “White Flights” was published in Boston Review in 2013, nobody in the American literary world, except perhaps Jonathan Franzen, had heard of Nell Zink, an American writer…

8164350585_3e7e8e6d07_o

“Wherein past, present, and future he beholds”: Comics and the Eternal Present

“What, then, is time?” Christian philosopher St. Augustine asked. “If no one asks me, I know what it is. If I wish to explain it to him who asks, I do…

12896372255_f0a452cdf4_k

In Another Country with Michelle Bailat-Jones

Dangling like a geologic afterthought at the southwestern tail of Japan’s archipelago, Kyushu Island is home to over thirteen million people and a chain of volcanic mountains. In the slopes,…

5077712593_822553a6e1_b

The History of the Wanderer

When I was four my family moved from our modest ranch house in Florissant, Missouri, to a larger two story home on an acre of land in Fairfax, Virginia. This…

yeboha_1114

Sources: Scholastique Mukasonga’s Our Lady of the Nile

In July, I travelled to Accra, Ghana for my sister’s engagement. Walking through my aunt’s one-story house, I searched the rooms for novelty and familiarity. So much had changed. Walls…

farkas_slide

Settlement: Bich Minh Nguyen’s Pioneer Girl

It’s no accident that the hardcover design of Bich Minh Nguyen’s Pioneer Girl evokes Laura Ingalls Wilder’s Little House On The Prairie books. The font is large like a children’s book; the dust-jacket made…

hardy_slide

The Previous Everyday: Nicola Griffith’s Hild

In Reading in Detail: Aesthetics and the Feminine, Naomi Schor explores the connection between detail and female identity in art and literature. Schor argues that detail can be threatening in its…

9166450047_b63dfea3d8_z

Where There is Dust, There is Hope

At the half-way point of Kenya’s hotly-contested 2007 elections, the challenger Raila Odinga seemed poised to unseat President Mwai Kibaki. Odinga championed a host of Kenyan tribes who felt underrepresented…

japanese

The Public “I” of Julie Otsuka

Few writers of color in the twenty-first century work in the fierce tones of the Black Arts and Red Power movements. Few writers of any race, working in any genre,…

1234567