one-off at the wrist

Advent X

Behind window 10: Experimental literature.

A very difficult one to define. Firstly as with all things, the criteria for ‘boundary pushing’ moves as the history of literature develops. Then, the writing that one finds ‘experimental’ changes as one reads more over the course of a lifetime.

Tree of Codes, Jonathan Safran Foer, 2010

Tree of Codes, Jonathan Safran Foer, 2010

As a writer and reader of hopefully such narratives I believe it is the stuff of mystery [literally literary X marks the spot] and I have to agree wholeheartedly with author Jonathan Safran Foer,

I’m not interested in experimentation for its own sake. But I’m interested in works of art that transport a reader. That send you to a different place—pure magic. We’ve gotten used to the notion that art, if it entertains or says something interesting about our time, that’s enough. But there’s something else it can do that nothing else can do. To be genuinely transported, to have your nerves touched, make your hair stand on end, that’s what I think art can do well—or only art can do.


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