Thursday, July 02, 2009

Memory and Lies

This month we consider writing on, and from, memory. Every autobiography has an unreliable narrator, and all writing is autobiographical, reflecting as it does a singular consciousness formed by unique experience. While some writers draw their narratives directly from life and produce memoirs clearly defined as such, others put their life stories to the service of fiction, rewriting the past in the transformation of life into art. Here characters revise their pasts in order to survive, then pass down those altered histories to their descendents, who in turn produce their own revisions. Political and personal borders shift and blur, rapture and grief are both detailed and elided, and one man’s moment is another’s (and another) story. Anna Enquist, Eduardo Halfon, André Kaminski, Eduardo Lago, Rouja Lazarova, Luan Starova, Jáchym Topol, Carles Torner, and Tomáš Weiss interrogate notions of truth, authenticity, and art in creating these compelling narratives.

--Words Without Borders, July 2009


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