Author Archive

Reading the Body in Second Person

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The works of Daisy Johnson and Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie demand a close look at the inherent sense of intimacy within the second-person perspective, forcing us to consider how we read the body in this mode of storytelling.

Karen Russell and the Art of Discomfort

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Without the draw of discomfort, horror wouldn’t be possible. Karen Russell uses different types of discomfort to shape her new short story, “Orange World,” in which Rae, an expectant mother with a high-risk pregnancy, makes a deal with the devil for the safety of her unborn child.

Hybridity in Color

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Anne Carson, Maggie Nelson, and Marie NDiaye destabilize categories like genre and color as a way of moving forward with exploring the disturbances found within personhood.

Achilles and the Art of the Character Flaw

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In the story of the Trojan War, Achilles’s “fatal flaw” changes drastically depending on the version and interpretation. Sometimes it’s his heel, the single weakness on an otherwise indestructible body; sometimes it’s his hubris, the crime of pride; sometimes it seems to be something more than either of those.

Alexandra Kleeman and the Poetics of Weather

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There’s much more to fictional weatherscapes than the tonal work that lies on the surface. Weather presents a fundamental aspect of narrative that, by definition, lies outside of the realm of agency.

Language and Linearity in A Wrinkle in Time

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What does it mean for an otherworldly fantasy to associate itself so closely with the language of real-world historical and contemporary figures? How does drawing from the language of the outside world enhance the interior, contained universe that exists within a film or novel?

Flora and the Passage of Time

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From Lewis Carroll’s Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland to Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie’s Purple Hibiscus, the temporality and fragility of flowers provide extensive ground for cultivating figurative meanings.

Lady Bird and the Art of the In-Between

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Lady Bird tells a categorically un-special story. But as a coming-of-age narrative, the film is tasked with charting a course through that fearful space where childhood meets adulthood, or in this case, where girlhood meets womanhood.

Sappho’s Tweets: A New Kind of Fragment

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What does it mean for an ancient poet and her translator—both women—to be taking up this kind of space in our Twitter timelines?

Carmen Machado and the Corporeal Text

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Carmen Machado weaves together textuality, orality, and corporeality in her brilliant short story collection Her Body and Other Parties.