Writing in Times of Pestilence

Now that society is struggling to deal with a devastating flu pandemic, I found the time ripe to give this subject some thoughts in a literary context. The first plague writings emerged around 1665 and resulted in innovative dialogues on a long endured illness. While the collective memory of the plague as an affliction was … Continue reading Writing in Times of Pestilence

Pseudo-intellectualism in Modern Literature.

People who presume, not-entirely-unreasonable, that "literary fiction" represents a value judgment, fail to understand that "literary fiction" is just a marketing category (coined in the 1970's by publishing and book retailers) characterized by slower pacing, stylized prose, introspection and a focus on interior life over exterior action, a focus on character over plot. What they are not, though, are inherent markers of quality.

Morbidity as a Fashionable Lifestyle.

The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines being morbid as “an attitude, quality, or state of mind marked by excessive gloom”. It’s beyond doubt that most of us have, into different degrees, some fascination for some morbid aspects of our existence. I know people who’re fascinated by cemeteries, all the way up to people who’re dedicating their life … Continue reading Morbidity as a Fashionable Lifestyle.