By Susan Golomb
When I was married and my then-husband and I visited Ireland, where half of his ancestors are from, everyone we met thought that I was the one who was looking for her roots. This thrilled me for reasons I’m not sure of. Was the actress in me proud of how well I could lose myself in another identity? Was it that I believed the Irish are the lost tribe of Israel — Leopold Bloom, Abie’s Irish Rose? Was it some latent Jewish self-hatred? Or was it simply the relief of knowing I could pass as Gentile? Continue reading
By Viet Thanh Nguyen (author of Pulitzer-Prize winning novel The Sympathizer) for the Provocations series, in conjunction with UCI’s “The Future of Truth” conference
As a Gook, in the eyes of some, I can testify that being remembered as the other is a dismembering experience, what we can call a disremembering. Disremembering is not simply the failure to remember. Disremembering is the unethical and paradoxical mode of forgetting at the same time as remembering, or, from the perspective of the other who is disremembered, of being simultaneously seen and not seen. Disremembering allows someone to see right through the other, an experience rendered so memorably by Ralph Ellison in the opening pages of Invisible Man. Continue reading
An Excerpt from World Literature Today
In November 2016 — for the first time in the magazine’s 90-year history — the entire issue of World Literature Today is devoted to women writers, translators, and reviewers. Encompassing essays, fiction, poetry, creative nonfiction, and interviews spanning the globe, the assemblage of writers glimpses how an international, contemporary literary canon populated solely by women might look. The magazine’s review section also presents 34 books written and reviewed by women. In addition, the issue includes city profiles, reading lists, and global-culture features from female contributors. All told, the issue presents a “utopia of literary parity” from cover to cover. The following piece, titled “Translating Little Black Boxes,” is an excerpt from the issue. It is Kerri Pierce’s translator’s note for “Dreamwriter” by Gunnhild Øyehaug, which she translated from the Norwegian.
By Scott Esposito
On October 10th, Scott Esposito released The Missing Books, a curated list of nearly 100 books that don’t exist. Esposito writes, for each entry, a short description of the book’s history — was it lost, abandoned, buried within another text? The list is divided into four categories: books that do not yet exist, books that come from other books, books that have been lost, and books that have been rediscovered. It is a living document which will be updated as needed. The following are excerpts from The Missing Books, the entirety of which is only available on Esposito’s website. Continue reading