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Merve Emre on Cristina Rivera Garza’s body of work; HarperCollins Union has voted to authorize a strike

Cristina Rivera Garza. Photo: And Other Stories

For the New Yorker, Merve Emre considers Mexican author Cristina Rivera Garza’s body of work. In Rivera Garza’s new story collection, out now from Dorothy, the dearth of proper names is generative: “The substitution of a descriptive epithet for a proper name is Rivera Garza’s signature technique for creating character. It is a baptismal act that reveals the lie behind all description. There is nothing natural or essential about the words—‘man,’ ‘woman’—that categorize people.” Rivera Garza’s writing is rife with other revealing gaps and elisions; discussing the absence of the word “femicide” in the story “The Iliac Crest,” Emre writes that “it is the missing word that hurls the reader down to earth.” 

Archipelago Books’ annual summer art auction for their children’s imprint, Elsewhere Editions, is underway now. 

The new issue of Dissent is out now. In an editor’s note, Timothy Shenk outlines the issue’s theme, “Foreign Policy.” “A century ago,” he writes, “the first major European socialist parties split over the First World War. Fifty years later, Vietnam fractured the New Deal order. Today, refusing to outline a coherent vision of the U.S. role in the world is a tacit way of saying the left shouldn’t be trusted with power. So, with this issue, Dissent is taking stock of a global landscape that is shifting before our eyes.”

Publishers Weekly reports that employees organizing with the HarperCollins Union have voted to authorize a strike if management refuses to agree to a fair contract.  

At The Nation, Najwa Jamal talks with Elif Batuman about her novels The Idiot and Either/Or. They discuss autofiction and autobiographical writing, what it takes to be a novelist, and shame. Batuman tells Jamal: “One of the things that’s really holding Selin back is her belief that it’s shameful to think about herself—which, if you think about it, is a really antisocial, antihuman, and anti-literary way of thinking. I think that all of writing, whether you write about yourself or not, is thinking about yourself, being really honest.”

The Paris Review has published a series of reflections on Leonard Cohen’s life and work to mark the publication of his short story “Begin Again” in the journal’s summer issue. Online now, read contributions by Nell Zink, Carina del Valle Schorske, Daniel Poppick, Andrew Martin, and Ottessa Moshfegh.