Posts Tagged: Electric Literature

Reading Deemed Criminal for Chelsea Manning

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The Federal Bureau of Prisons regulations, as investigated by The Atlantic, state their right to prohibit any publications found “to be detrimental to the security, good order, or discipline of the institution or if it might facilitate criminal activity.”

Chelsea Manning is incarcerated for divulging state secrets to WikiLeaks. 

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Don’t “Fake” Read Ferrante

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In preparation for the release of the last book of Elena Ferrante’s Neapolitan Novels, Electric Literature’s Emma Adler offers a comprehensive “study guide” to the previous three books. While the article is “complete with hard-to-pronounce names, flashbacks and flash-forwards, and enough plot twists to fill a season’s worth of All My Children,” Adler is carful to warn prospective Ferrante readers not to rely on the guide in lieu of reading the novelist’s earlier works, as “faking having read a Ferrante novel is probably impossible.”

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Belize’s Art Revolution

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At Electric Literature, Monica Byrne discusses the ongoing art revolution in Belize, and how artists create works that represent a diverse and beautiful country dealing with the trauma of postcolonialism:

If an artist isn’t interested in protest per se, how does one articulate a visual language of pleasure that is truly their own, and not that of the colonizers?  

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“Seeing” Setting

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For Electric Literature, Emma Adler interviews Kathleen Alcott about her new novel Infinite Home. Their conversation covers topics surrounding non-biological family structures, and the importance of setting in Alcott’s work:

I have a memory that is very much image-based. Maybe this makes me sound like a lunatic, but I sort of consider it a secret power, that I can be in line at the deli and suddenly be very much confronted by a very clear image of a place I was once, can conjure the texture of the t-shirts people I loved wore, the color of the kitchen tile, the particular type of tree… I tend to attach to these sort of environmental details, and so sitting down and writing a fictional place, I’m “seeing” in the same way.

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The Sci-Fi “Code”

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For Electric Literature, Ryan Britt interviews Cuban sci-fi novelist Yoss. Their discussion covers the influence of heavy metal on Yoss’s fiction, as well as how science fiction can work as “code” for contemporary social issues:

In Cuba, on the other hand, it is normal that if one deals directly with the most critical points of the “real world,” the official response will be, in fact, intolerant: If one does not draw an optimistic panorama, one will be accused of being a defeatist, of siding with the enemy, etc.

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This Week in Short Fiction

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There are countless metaphors for love: a rose, a flame, a garden, a loaded gun, a battlefield. We’ve heard them all—or so we thought. This week at Electric Literature’s Recommended Reading, Joyland editor Lisa Locascio recommended Amelia Gray’s story, “The Swan as Metaphor for Love.” The title sounds lovely, evoking peaceful lakes and graceful swan necks bent toward each other, beaks kissing, to form the shape of a heart.

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Dear White Men, Publish Responsibly

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For Electric Literature, Adalena Kavanagh has a conversation with poet Elisa Gabbert on Google Chat about how to advise white male writers to publish ethically. Their conversation also explores topics related to power structures in the publishing industry, and the implications of white authors writing from the perspective of a different race:

There is a long tradition of male novelists writing female characters, and that doesn’t feel *necessarily* problematic to me.

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We Shall Not Ban Comics in English Class!

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Recently, Tara Shultz, a college student at Crafton Hills College, expressed her shock and disgust at the “pornographic and violent” content in the selection of graphic novels (Sandman by Neil Gaiman, Persepolis by Marjane Satrapi) used in her English class and called upon the university to excise the texts from the curriculum.

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The Feminine Mystique of Miss Marple

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Miss Marple’s strength as a mystery novel heroin was inseparable from her character: that of a nosy, small town spinster. Far from taking those identity markers as pejorative, Alice Bolin has written a stirring defense of Miss Marple (and her creator, Agatha Christie) as a champion of a particularly feminine brand of sleuthing: one that requires intimate knowledge of relationships and the domestic habits of her British village.

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This Week in Short Fiction

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You can count on One Story as a sort of literary sieve, distilling story-sized servings of up-and-coming writers we should know, and soon enough will know, if we don’t know them already. Next week, One Story will host its annual Literary Debutante Ball, a party thrown in honor of those who’ve published stories with them and whose first books were born this year.

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The Great American Tweeter

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Reading Literary Twitter is to witness brief, terse glimpses into the writerly psyche, and how insecure and unsure and thin-skinned we tend to be. As writers, we want to be validated. We want to matter. The published stories and poems and essays, the books we sell, the magazines we edit: all this output, this paper expelled out to the world, the screens we invade with our narratives, it all matters to us.

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This Week in Short Fiction

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Earlier this month, Steven Millhauser released Voices in the Night, a new collection of short stories. On Tuesday, the Boston Globe described the towns of many of the stories in this newest effort as “Millhauserian,” which Eugenia Williamson defines as places where “characters must process their encounters with the uncanny without breaking their rose-colored glasses.”

Such is the case in Millhauser’s “Sons and Mothers,” which first appeared in the Winter 2012 issue of Tin House.

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LitHub Launches

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Lithub, a new web endeavor from Electric Literature with partnerships between publishers, magazines, journals, and existing websites, launched yesterday with the aim of becoming a portal at the center of the literary world. The Guardian caught up with site editor Jonny Diamond who explained how the website hopes to operate:

“The very basic quid pro quo is an ad in exchange for a feature or excerpt.

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The Idiot Follows

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Scary movie of the hour It Follows is peppered with intertextual references to Dostoyevsky’s The Idiot. Ben Apatoff looks for the connection (if there is one):

If anything, The Idiot enhances It Follows more than it represents it, augmenting the film’s foreboding atmosphere with quotes from a writer who could create anxiety and suspense as artfully as any of the Russian greats.

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