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Posts Tagged: truth

“Who the Hell Cares About Anne Sexton’s Grandmother?”

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When we read a piece of fiction, we don’t assume—or at least we know we’re not supposed to assume—it’s a faithful recreation of an event in the author’s life. But what about when we read a poem?

For Poetry, Kathleen Rooney writes about realizing Brian Russell’s poems about a wife’s terminal illness were not actually about the real-life Mrs.

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“Every Narrative Voice Is a Fiction”

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Some years ago I attended a [Margaret Atwood] reading….She introduced the story she read by saying that it was not autobiographical. Then she read her story about a woman who weighed somewhere in the vicinity of 300 pounds. When she was done, and the Q&A started, the first question was: “Miss Atwood, how did you lose all that weight?”

The Los Angeles Review of Books has a fascinating interview with several writers, including our very own David Biespiel, about the wriggly nature of truth in writing of any genre, whether it’s fiction, nonfiction, poetry, memoir—anything.

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Questioning Truth in Photos

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Errol Morris, the truth-seeker/director of the documentary The Thin Blue Line and The Fog of War is once again having us question the facts. His collection of essays, Believing is Seeing (Observations on the Mysteries of Photography) considers our undiscerning trust in photos, though their reliability is as questionable as any story-telling medium.

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