• J. M. Coetzee
    December 09, 2022

    Penguin Random House CEO steps down; J. M. Coetzee and global English

    The CEO of Penguin Random House, Markus Dohle, is stepping down. PRH has been in the news lately as the company had a proposed merger with Simon & Schuster blocked by a federal judge.  

    At the New Yorker’s Page Turner blog, Colin Marshall looks at J. M. Coetzee’s decision to publish his new novel in Spanish before it’s made available in English, and considers the author’s contention that the Spanish translation is closer to his true intentions for the book. As Marshall reports, Coetzee said at a literary festival, “I do not like the way in which English is taking over the world . . .  I don’t

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  • Margo Jefferson. Photo: Claire Holt
    December 06, 2022

    Margo Jefferson on questioning her writing self; New York Times Guild says a work stoppage is likely

    A work stoppage on Thursday from members of the New York Times Guild is likely. Last week, over 1,000 union members pledged to walk out on the job if management does not agree to a fair contract by December 8. 

    The new issue of the Yale Review features work by Windham-Campbell Prize winners, including Margo Jefferson, who contributed an essay on “questioning my writing self more pointedly.” In particular, Jefferson scrutinizes her “need for elective affinities” and to rebel against “a writer who helped make you possible.” 

    Issue 44 of n+1 magazine is online now, with an “Intellectual Situation”

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  • Memory by Bernadette Mayer. Courtesy of Siglio Press
    December 05, 2022

    Bernadette Mayer, 1945-2022

    Author and filmmaker Astra Taylor gives a short talk on student loans and how we can rethink debt

    The Feminist Press is currently accepting submissions.

    Michael Schaffer writes about why no one wants books on the Biden Administration, and why the publishing industry considers them “bookstore poison.”

    The poet and artist Bernadette Mayer—the author of Midwinter Day (an exploration of “the richness of life and time as they happen to us in tiny explosions,” per John Ashbery), Memory, and other books—has died at seventy-seven. 

    The Monthly of Australia has published a new story, “The Glass

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  • Delphine Seyrig in Jeanne Dielman, 23, quai du Commerce, 1080 Bruxelles. Janus Films
    December 02, 2022

    Sight and Sound’s greatest films of all time; Hanif Abdurraqib on Osa Atoe’s Black punk zines

    Sight and Sound’s decennial ranking of the greatest films of all time has been updated from a new poll of 1,639 film critics, curators, academics, archivists, and programmers. The last time the rankings were published, in 2012, Hitchcock’s Vertigo (1958) topped the list. This year, that spot was usurped by Chantal Akerman’s Jeanne Dielman, 23, quai du Commerce, 1080 Bruxelles (1975). 

    Maria Dimitrova interviews Elif Batuman, the author most recently of Either/Or, for the Paris Review’s online edition. They discuss Batuman’s crisis of faith in the novel at the beginning of the Trump administration,

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  • December 01, 2022

    Aline Kominsky-Crumb has died at age seventy-four

    The comics artist Aline Kominsky-Crumb has died at age seventy-four. Beginning in the early 1970s, Kominsky-Crumb pioneered an unfiltered and personal style that pushed the boundaries of what was acceptable to depict in art. Kominsky-Crumb frequently collaborated with her husband, Robert Crumb, over the years, and the couple also made work with their daughter, Sophie. The family were recently featured in a joint exhibition at David Zwirner gallery in Paris. In February of this year, Kominsky-Crumb told Sarah Moroz in Artforum: “I’m not a facile artist, I’m a tortured artist. I don’t censor

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  • Harmony Holiday
    November 30, 2022

    Harmony Holiday on epic heroes and Black romantic leads; Lucy Ives theorizes “the weak novel”

    Bookforum contributor Harmony Holiday discusses her latest poetry book, an epic called Maafa, with Sandra Simonds for the Bennington Review: “Epic heroes tend to be sovereign, and with that jurisdiction over themselves even their perceived mistakes are glorious points of adventure and faith. I want that for Black female archetypes, who I refer to in my mind as ‘Black romantic leads’ sometimes. I want romance for us.”

    At The Baffler, Lucy Ives theorizes “the weak novel.” For Ives, “weakness is not a bad thing. Rather, weakness, specifically literary weakness, is enlivening, challenging, and

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  • Nadja Spiegelman
    November 29, 2022

    Astra magazine announces that it will close

    Astra, the international literary biannual magazine edited by Nadja Spiegelman, has announced that it will close by the end of 2022. “Our parent company, APH, has decided to shut down Astra Magazine,” Astra staff members write in a statement. “This means we will not put out the third issue we were in the midst of preparing, the website will stop publishing new work, and the staff will be let go.” The announcement continues: “We’re extremely proud of the work we published in print and online in such a short time. The magazine succeeded by every measure we set for it, including selling out our

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  • Eileen Myles. Photo: Shae Detar
    November 28, 2022

    The New York Times’s Notable Books of the year; Eileen Myles and Tom Cole are hosting a reading and performance series

    The New York Times has compiled an interactive list of “100 Notable Books of 2022,” which includes James Hannaham’s Didn’t Nobody Give a Shit What Happened to Carlotta, Gary Indiana’s Fire Season, Namwali Serpell’s The Furrows, and many more. 

    “Now comes a coincidence.” Read a new short story by Danielle Dutton in the latest New Yorker.

    Critic and scholar of the history of poetics Kamran Javadizadeh is launching a podcast, Close Readings, in which he will host guests to discuss one of their favorite poems. 

    At The Guardian, journalist Shiva Akhavan Rad talks to Elena Ferrante about the

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  • Octavia E. Butler. Photo: Ching-Ming Cheung
    November 22, 2022

    How journalists are covering human rights at the World Cup; a profile of Octavia E. Butler

    At Jacobin, Neil Vallelly writes about the human-rights violations behind the 2022 World Cup in Qatar and reflects on the shortcomings in how those abuses are talked about in the media and larger society: “Appeals to end human rights violations in Qatar focus on the instances of repression without reflecting on the structural causes of that repression.” At Vanity Fair, Tom Kludt writes about the challenges journalists face in covering the tournament. Kludt observes that “in Qatar, the controversy will never be far removed from the competition itself.”  The Athletic has had extensive coverage

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  • James Hannaham (photo: Isaac Fitzgerald)
    November 21, 2022

    Novelist James Hannaham Talks with Artist Nina Katchadourian

    The New York Times reports that Penguin Random House’s deal to buy Simon & Schuster for $2.175 billion “is close to collapsing after Simon & Schuster’s parent company decided to allow the purchase agreement to expire.” The deal already faced a serious setback last month when a federal judge halted the sale on antitrust grounds. 

    New Yorker contributor Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor and Jen Parker are creating a new magazine, Hammer & Hope, which will focus on Black politics and culture. From the publication’s Twitter page: “For those who care about the Black freedom struggle – the sign up is liveeeee!”

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  • Katherine Rundell. Photo: Nina Subin/Bloomsbury 
    November 18, 2022

    Katherine Rundell awarded the Baillie Gifford Prize; Olúfẹ́mi O. Táíwò has sold a book on political freedom

    Olúfẹ́mi O. Táíwò, author of Elite Capture and Reconsidering Reparations, has sold his next book to Farrar, Straus and Giroux. Autobiography will draw on “thinkers and activists from the Black radical tradition, anti-colonial and environmental movements and the history of philosophy” to explore the idea of political freedom. 

    Katherine Rundell has won this year’s Baillie Gifford Prize for Nonfiction for Super-Infinite, her biography of John Donne. According to the judges chair, the decision was unanimous. 

    n+1 is running a series of tributes to Mike Davis, the scholar and activist who died

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  • Imani Perry
    November 17, 2022

    Imani Perry wins the 2022 National Book Award in nonfiction; advice on organizing from Lux magazine

    The 2022 National Book Awards were announced last night in New York. The winners include Tess Gunty in fiction, Imani Perry in nonfiction, John Keene in poetry, and Samanta Schweblin and Megan McDowell in translated literature.  

    Steven Ginsberg, a former Washington Post editor, has been named the executive editor of The Athletic. The sports media company, which is said to have more than one million paid subscribers, was purchased by the New York Times in January.  

    The socialist feminist magazine Lux has posted its advice column from issue five, with tips for political organizing from Combahee

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