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Posts Tagged ‘The Paris Review’

There’s the Great Man

August 2, 2016 | by

Befriending George Plimpton.

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George Plimpton in his office.

George’s questions were like trampolines, a technology he admired. They bounced you higher—to the next question. This was particularly true when he was talking about writers and writing.

“Did you know that the great Camus played goal for the Oran Football Club?” he asked me when we were walking past an Algerian restaurant near his apartment on Seventy-Second Street. I was unaware but said that I did think Gabriel García Márquez had written a soccer column for a while in Bogota.

Alas,” George sighed, “Le colonisateur de bonne volonte was never moved to write about it. Imagine, the existential goalkeeper.”

Alas,” I said, and he gave me a look. Read More »

The Moving-Picture Principle

July 28, 2016 | by

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Lauren Wilcox’s poem “The Motion-Picture Principle” first appeared in our Summer 2004 issue. She has also been published in the Antioch Review and the Oxford AmericanRead More »

Subscribe to The Paris Review with Your Book Club for 25 Percent Off

July 27, 2016 | by

Book clubs make life better. They strengthen friendships. They broaden horizons. They provide an airtight excuse for wine and cheese. And ideally they lead to unforgettable conversations. The one trouble with book clubs—in our experience—is finding stuff that interests everyone, and that none of the group has read. 

We can help with that. If your book club reads fiction, sign up now and receive a 25 percent discount on subscriptions to The Paris Review. We have the newest and best in fiction. In just the past few years we’ve published writers like Emma Cline, Ottessa Moshfegh, Ben Lerner, Angela Flournoy, Rachel Kushner, Rachel Cusk—before they were best sellers or critics’ picks. The stories in every issue are ripe for discussion: up to the moment, provocative, and fraught with questions of intimacy, family, morality, aging, and generally just living life in the early twenty-first century. (And that’s not even taking our interviews into consideration.) As Kirkus put it, there’s “a searing reality present” in The Paris Review “that feels wholly different from the kind of writing we all consume on a daily basis.”

If you’re in a book club with six readers or more, you can get your discount today. Here’s how:

  • Have everyone in your group send an e-mail to bookclub@theparisreview.org with the same subject line. (The name of your town, the title of the last book you read—whatever.)
  • We’ll send you and your friends a custom promotion code; you can all use it at our online store to redeem your discounted subscriptions.

(Teachers: if you’d like to have your students read and discuss The Paris Review in your classroom, send a note to bookclub@theparisreview.org and we’ll help you set up a discounted bulk order.)

“Bad Behavior”: An Interview with Alexia Arthurs

July 6, 2016 | by

Photo of Alexia Arthurs by Kaylia Duncan.

Photo of Alexia Arthurs by Kaylia Duncan.

Bad Behavior,” a short story by Alexia Arthurs in our new Summer issue, follows Stacy, the teenage daughter of Jamaican immigrants living in Brooklyn. After a series of troubling events at home and school, she’s sent to live with her grandmother in Jamaica. 

Arthurs, a graduate of Hunter College and the Iowa Writers’ Workshop, was born in Jamaica and moved to New York with her family at the age of twelve. She wrote to me about her story by e-mail. 

INTERVIEWER

Where did “Bad Behavior” come from?

ARTHURS

I wondered what an immigrant mother sacrifices when she raises her children in America—so many of her energies are directed toward survival and providing. I babysat to pay for my undergraduate education in New York City, and I noticed that women who were more financially settled—who could afford expensive childcare and someone to clean for them—were particularly concerned with the anxieties of their children. It’s interesting to consider which mothers have that privilege, to be present in a vigorous way. “Bad Behavior” deals with this—“Not all mothers could afford to be kind.” Also, once I knew of a young girl who was dangerously reckless, and I remember that someone suggested sending her to Jamaica as a last resort. I don’t know what became of the girl. Read More »

A Terrifying Morality Tale

February 17, 2016 | by

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Hawt.

Here’s the thing: This ad wasn’t just in the Winter 1968 issue of The Paris Review. It was on the back cover. And incidentally, if this brutal, vivid, and immediate glimpse makes you want to journey further beyond the conventions of reality, check out Jerzy Kosinski’s Art of Fiction interview from Issue No. 54! 

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We’ve Got Spines for Everyone, and Other News

January 22, 2016 | by

Collect ’em all. (All 215 of them.)

  • AIGA’s Eye on Design blog has a thoughtful, thorough history of The Paris Review’s art and design, with stories from our former editor Maxine Groffsky and our art editor, Charlotte Strick. “The masthead has shape shifted from serif to sans and back again; its size has gone from pamphlet, to book, to magazine, to somewhere in-between … ‘Mining The Paris Review’s rich archives revealed that the primary role of design in those mid-century issues was to support the publication’s beautifully curated literature and artwork,’ says art editor Strick. She was determined to make the current publication work in the same way, while simultaneously reminding the reader of The Paris Review’s continual evolution.”
  • Scholars have long endeavored to place Sarah Palin on the continuum of American poets—but where does she belong? Her speech endorsing Trump this week suggests that she’s the next Walt Whitman, as Jeet Heer writes: “There is a strong consensus among Palin scholars as to where she fits into the poetic pantheon: She is heir to the tradition of free-flowing democratic verse that runs from Walt Whitman to Carl Sandburg to Allen Ginsberg … Now that Palin is back in the spotlight, it’s hard not to hear her voice in her great precursor Whitman. Palin’s alliterative apostrophe to the common folk of Iowa (“You farm families! And teachers! And teamsters! And cops, and cooks!”) calls to mind the egalitarian inclusiveness of Whitman’s many lists … As a right-wing populist, Palin shifts the political valence but keeps the allegiance to the ordinary. As much as any Whitmanesque poet, she claims to be the voice of those who are never listened to.”
  • In which Janet Malcolm takes Ted Hughes’s unauthorized biographer, Jonathan Bate, to task: “Beyond tastelessness there is Bate’s cluelessness about what you can and cannot do if you want to be regarded as an honest and serious writer … The question of what [Hughes] was ‘really’ like remains unanswered, as it should. If anything is our own business, it is our pathetic native self. Biographers, in their pride, think otherwise. Readers, in their curiosity, encourage them in their impertinence. Surely Hughes’s family, if not his shade, deserve better than Bate’s squalid findings about Hughes’s sex life and priggish theories about his psychology.”
  • Fact: Robert Pinsky once wrote a text-adventure video game called Mindwheel. “For a brief time in the mid-nineteen-eighties major literary publishers, including Simon & Schuster and Random House, opened software divisions, and major bookstores stocked works of ‘interactive fiction,’ ” writes James Reith; Pinsky’s Mindwheel is “a playful mishmash of sci-fi tropes, Pop surrealism, and allusions both high and low: the work of a poet having fun, but still the work of a poet. After all, Pinsky pointed out to me, ‘allusion’ and ‘ludicrous’ both come from the Latin ludere, meaning ‘to play.’ ”
  • While we’re here poring over our “books” and our “literature,” there are people out there with their eyes on the real prize: an elevator to the stars. “As outlandish as it seems, a space elevator would make getting to space accessible, affordable and potentially very lucrative. But why it hasn’t happened yet basically boils down to materials—even the best of today’s super-strong and super-lightweight materials just still aren’t good enough to support a space elevator … ‘The problem with the entire space elevator effort is that there is no real support for it … This is what a project looks like when it’s done as a hobby, by hundreds of people spread out all over the world. There will be no substantial progress until there is real support and professional coordinating management for the effort.’ ”