Thoughts on Seymour Krim and George W. S. Trow that probably fail to illuminate the uses of comedy and tragedy.
While it’s tempting to see “The Tempest” by William Shakespeare as a gentle story about forgiveness, love, and magic, its central protagonist makes that interpretation very difficult.
Shakespeare’s play about political speech and the violence that underlies it raises questions about Caesar and democracy that we’ll likely never answer fully.
The Tragedy of Macbeth: The story of a man who aspired to be a monster, and forgot he would only be a man for a brief time.
Shakespeare’s Richard III is a useful reminder of how difficult it is to live under a truly malevolent man when power is centralized in his hands. As if one was needed.
It’s hard to transmogrify work and poverty into art. Never Come Morning, by Nelson Algren, probably did accomplish that feat…
We now interrupt your scheduled arrival for a brief existential crisis. (Or, maybe, it’s just like that for me.)
In Adele Bertei’s novelistic memoir, a Dickensian waif survives a rough childhood and recreates herself as a queer “stud,” a poet, and a performer through the saving grace of music.
In his highly lauded novel “The Underground Railroad,” Colson Whitehead, rewires the creaky old machinery of the novel and finds it still able of reaching surprising new depths.
Magda Szabó published Katalin Street 20 years before The Door, and 10 years after being rehabilitated as a former “enemy of the state.”
This seems to be how Colette wrote her masterpiece novellas: Chéri and The End of Chéri: she had these two characters in mind
They always judge you. On Hungarian writer Magda Szabó’s haunting novel about a housekeeper who loves and persecutes her employer in equal measure.
We’re not all Christian anarchists like Leo Tolstoy, but he’s not exactly wrong about how art eases our sense of isolation.
Like fairy tales for mad children, the stories of Leonora Carrington are as packed with strangeness and complete imaginative freedom as her paintings.