Paradise Rot and the Art of Sexual Awakening

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In Marjam Idriss’ new translation of Jenny Hval’s novel, the biblical Fall of Man is reimagined within a narrative of queer female desire.

“Writing is its own country”: An Interview With Mark Haber

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Mark Haber is perhaps one of the most influential yet low-key of tastemakers in the book world. What Haber reads, people buy, because you know that when Haber recommends it, it is the real deal.

The Taiga Syndrome by Cristina Rivera Garza

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Garza's use of language and suspense is so skillful that she can remind us of the artifice of fiction in one moment, holding us up so we can see everything in its place, and in the next push our heads back beneath the surface of its conceit.

After the Winter by Guadalupe Nettel, translated by Rosalind Harvey

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Guadalupe Nettel's writing, in an excellent translation by Rosalind Harvey, is spare, occasionally eerie and always elegant.

When Rap Spoke Straight to God by Erica Dawson

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Readers must view Dawson's book-length poem from an intersectional lens—regarding the impact on the narrative voices of the white gaze, the male gaze, and the gaze of the self—in order to fully experience its nuances.

The Country Inside Your Skin: Reading Old Rendering Plant in the Alamo City

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The Alamo is a physical manifestation of Stasi-like doublespeak, a celebration of white mediocrity, white insularity, and the deep need to claim victory at all costs despite thorough defeat—a strategy for decentering truth not unlike the modus operandi of the Trump administration or its lackeys.

Saar Yachin, Ethan Nichtern, and the Poetry of Instability

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“Ewer Toccata” depicts the surprise that Saar Yachin—a poet, translator, and musician—experienced when he moved to the desert town of Mitzpe Ramon in southern Israel and was hit by divine inspiration. “I went to the desert to find quiet,” he writes. “Boom! Ewers of poetry.”

The Poet’s Participation in the Global Economy

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How can and how does the poet contribute to the political, historical, and economic tradition of their society?

Stephen King’s Misery, Delphine de Vigan’s Based on a True Story, and Writers’ Fears

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If de Vigan’s novel indulges the writer’s fear that the writing may dry up, King’s indulges a different but related fear: that you will be forced to write, forever, what you long to outgrow.

Reading Roughly

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It doesn’t take much formal study to read a novel in another language, if you don’t mind being unable to understand the occasional sentence or paragraph. It depends more on guessing and sympathy with a particular language or culture than it does on a knowledge of grammar or vocabulary.