Havelock in the Boondocks

            Many accounts of Homer's life circulated in classical antiquity, the most prevalent being that he was a blind bard from Ionia, in present-day Turkey. His biography, written by Pseudo-Herodotus is now considered legend, the story of a blind man trapped in eternal darkness, being led to a gathering of people to recite his epics.[1] Perhaps it was… Continue reading Havelock in the Boondocks

Tales for winter nights

Reading some of Olga Tokarczuk greatest hits Polish author Olga Tokarczuk once compared her books to music videos. This analogy applies both to her collection of short stories and novels: They are self-contained, and the narratives are dense and short, so there is not even a moment of digression. The narratives vividly construct imaginative vignettes of ordinary… Continue reading Tales for winter nights

A New Prince Must Rise

Review of Michael Hardt and Antonio Negri's 'Assembly' It's all a question of assembly: Michael Hardt and Antonio Negri know how really productive work can break the common good. Yes, they did it again: after "Empire", "Multitude" and "Common Wealth", now comes "Assembly", the latest delivery in the series of subversive feel-good books from H… Continue reading A New Prince Must Rise

Elena Ferrante’s Naples Tetralogy

From the chaos of history (n) and of life, literature extracts its own world - a formed, an ordered world? And what does this world have to do with that life? An old question that has always been answered, weighted and interpreted again and again. In Elena Ferrante's "saga" about the narrator Elena Greco, who… Continue reading Elena Ferrante’s Naples Tetralogy

Literate Gangsters

"BY NIGHT IN CHILE" is another novel discovery by the great Chilean author Roberto Bolaño A mediocre Chilean poet, far more famous as a literary critic and priest, is dying. All his life he had been alone, Sebastián Urrutia Lacroix writes. He then proceeds to a monolithic paragraph of his laborious justification, in which it… Continue reading Literate Gangsters