David Burr Gerrard’s new novel The Epiphany Machine is one of the more ambitious books you’ll read this year, centering on a device that can reveal the epiphany of your life by tattooing the words onto your arm. “ABANDONS WHAT MATTERS MOST” is just one example of the sort of permanent self-owns that get written on the flesh of characters in his funny and riveting novel....more
Posts Tagged: Columbia University
The artist statement is not just a representation of what you are working on, but an intervention in what you are working on. If you start saying, I aim to do this and not to do this, maybe it keeps you from thinking of your perfect aim, which is none of those things.
Alexander Matthews interviews Colm Toíbín for Aerodrome, touching on Toíbín’s transition from journalism and poetry to fiction, coming out, therapy, expatriatism, and the fallacy of self-expression. Toíbín describes the writing process—and writing life—as a “basic urge to communicate levels of feeling—things from the nervous system, and from memory, to other people....more
The rapid rise of “trigger warnings” is starting to impact literature curriculums. For instance, Columbia University students lobbied to include warnings on Ovid’s Metamorphoses, a core text in Western Literature syllabi. Columbia refused to include warnings, but essentially capitulated by expunging the text from its curriculum entirely....more
In 1983, Terry Belanger created a curriculum for librarians to learn how to deal with rare books at Columbia University. Nine years later, the University of Virginia hired him and the Rare Book School moved to Charlottesville. The school now has 80,000 rare volumes and runs highly competitive five-day session where students are taught the ins and outs of rare books....more
Emma Sulkowicz graduated from Columbia University yesterday. She might have gone unnoticed had she not also been carrying around a mattress.
In her sophomore year at Columbia, Sulkowicz was raped. Like many rape victims, Sulkowicz considered her attacker a friend, and he was someone she had slept with twice before....more
I offer all of this not by way of aimless self-revelation, but as a way of provoking you to remember your stories about similar incidents in your life, stories about the night, and who smoked what and who was doing who mixed in with outside events, such as the politics of your time, mixed in with the books you were reading, the films you were seeing, the poems you were memorizing, because all of it is your source material.
The new media landscape might tear writing as we know it apart—or it might give us opportunities to find thrilling new niches.
Tomorrow night in NYC, join writers and editors from Columbia University, Tin House, and more to hear how they’ve “carved out a new media approach to old school storytelling,” and how you, too, can “find your niche.”
See their Facebook event page for more details....more