I’m taking a writing class with Gotham Writers’ Workshop right now, and one of the assignments was to create an imaginary bio for yourself. It was no holds barred, so I could have imagined myself as a legendary world traveller, universally admired academic, or much loved novelist and poet–all of which makes what I did end up writing somewhat puzzling:Continue reading
“Zora Neale Hurston on Racial Identity, Ninety Years Later” has been Published!
I’m pleased to announce that The Columbia Review has published my essay “Zora Neale Hurston on Being Black in America, Ninety Years Later” on their website (the title has been changed to the one you see in the title of this post). If you have a chance click over there and give them a visit. Thanks!
Zora Neale Hurston on Being Black in America: Ninety Years Later
[UPDATE: I’m pleased to let you know that this essay has been published on The Columbia Review‘s website.] Commencement season at Barnard College this year will mark the ninetieth anniversary of Zora Neale Hurston’s graduation with a BA in anthropology. As a graduate of Barnard’s sister institution, Columbia University, I feel the time is more than ripe to reflect on some of Hurston’s contributions. Continue reading
Ever since I read J.R.R. Tolkien’s essay “Fairy-Stories,” I’ve wanted to write a post about it. Then Ursula Le Guin’s new collection No Time to Spare came out, and I wanted to include some of her comments too. So far, so good, two of my favorite authors backing up several points on which I’m quite passionate. Then Continue reading
The river’s roar is the subtle backdrop to everything in Kangding 康定. Five hundred—even a thousand—feet up the hillside it’s still there, echoing endlessly between the valley’s mountain walls. Continue reading
What a Wanderer Lacks
In one of Thomas Wolfe’s stories (“The Lost Boy”) a man in St. Louis calls to mind how far he is from his home on the East Coast and thinks, “Oh God! but it’s a big country!” Continue reading
The windows were large, clean, and clear, but all one piece. There was no way to open them, presumably so the passengers wouldn’t waste precious air-conditioning on days when there was no need for it to begin with. Continue reading
Child on the Train
A little girl in a pink cardigan, no more than four, was running up and down the hallway. Each time she passed their compartment she slowed down and craned her head sideways to look inside. She had done this three times already, and showed no sign of losing interest. He couldn’t help but laugh as she careened past a fourth time and made a screeching halt to flash them a peace sign. Continue reading
Trees on a Hillside
The train lurched out of the tunnel and into the open air. The rich, lime-green of summer rice-fields carpeted the valley that spread suddenly before him in the slanting rays of the setting sun-the light-itself a visible thing: part of the scenery, more than illumination. Continue reading
Kurt Vonnegut on just about Everything
I am writing a post today on Kurt Vonnegut for no particular reason. There are other posts I could work on that would be far more in keeping with the overall theme of this blog, but this is what I feel like writing today. One of the nice things about a blog is that you can write anything you want and publish it. There’s no guarantee anyone will ever read it, but that holds true for books as well. Continue reading