narrative

The Tyranny of Stories

My livelihood depends on fiction. To this end I have published a book arguing for the importance of literature in life. I have posted personal blogs that combine internal reflection with cultural commentary. In short, I see the absolute importance of narrative in life and work. Yet, I also realize that stories can get in the way of understanding life.

Four Generators and the Power of Stories

I got a new lesson on the force of narrative during the blackout that affected much of the mid-west and east coast in early July. It was the third time our own neighborhood had experienced an extended power outage in four years. This time, however, the temperatures soared to the 100F mark for eight powerless days.

Against Narratives III. Or a Certain Kind of Narrative

A recent talk by my colleague Joshua Landy on "Still Life in a Narrative Age: Charlie Kaufman's Adaptation," and the comments on my most recent blog "Against Narrative" made me cruelly aware of a divide between on the one hand the perception of what Josh and myself see as the creeping dominance of narrative models to think about life, but also, by extension, to experience it.

The Hermeneutics of Babies

Babies are usually the stuff of private life, clichés, and endearing memories that we check out as we set foot on campus grounds. Yet babies are the greatest--and arguably the cutest--hermeneutic subjects.

Pages