Monday, November 29, 2010

Contemporary American literature: MFA vs. NYC

Note to self: if you ever get interested, even slightly, in the contemporary American literary scene, Chad Harbach is at Slate to tell you all about it. It's a long-ass article, and full of that trademark Slate snark, but even if only half of it is true, it explains a lot about what you've inadvertently absorbed about modern lit without really understanding: the place of New York, the place of not-New York, the importance of Raymond Carver. It's good enough to almost make you feel guilty about not having read anybody mentioned in the article except Nabokov, Faulkner, Carver, Pynchon, Auster, O'Brien, and Diaz. Remember that feeling.

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