How Neil Gaiman’s The Sandman Representation Continues to Impact and Inspire

Written by Jeff Rose

Discussions on the importance of LGBTQ+ representation and accurate media portrayals and novel adaptations continue to dominate much of literary culture today. Neil Gaiman and N. K. Jemisin recently talked about these issues in a  discussion posted on LitHub.

As someone who read Gaiman’s The Sandman as a teenager, it was inspiring to see the way his work continues to influence new writers like Jemisin. Like Jemisin, I fell in love with American comics because of The Sandman. Gaiman’s comic showed me how impactful visual storytelling can be and how much of a literary art form it is.

Continue reading “How Neil Gaiman’s The Sandman Representation Continues to Impact and Inspire”

Problematic Literary Fave: Sherman Alexie and the #MeToo Movement in Literature

Written by Kiran Gokal

If you googled Native American poet and author Sherman Alexie a month ago, you would have seen the abundance of praised novels, short stories and poems that draw on his experiences as a Spokane Native American growing up on a reservation.  If you looked today, you would encounter the flurry of articles dissecting numerous sexual misconduct allegations against Alexie by multiple women, including fellow Native American women authors.

Continue reading “Problematic Literary Fave: Sherman Alexie and the #MeToo Movement in Literature”

Brontë Society to Publish Two Lost Charlotte Brontë Manuscripts

Written by Kendall Talbot

I thought I had experienced everything there was to experience regarding the Brontës: I have read all their published work, studied their lives in a class dedicated solely to them, and even made a literary pilgrimage to their home in Haworth (yes, the moors are as bleak and melancholy as Emily Brontë makes them out to be). So you can imagine my delight upon learning that there would soon be more of the Brontës for me to devour. MobyLives recently reported that two lost Charlotte Brontë manuscripts, a seventy-seven-line poem and a seventy-four-line story, will be published by the Brontë Society later this year.

Continue reading “Brontë Society to Publish Two Lost Charlotte Brontë Manuscripts”

On the Merit of Literary Awards

Written by Madalyn Campbell

LitHub recently published an article detailing award-winning books that have been generally forgotten in time. Scrolling down the list, even the most avid reader may find themselves facing completely unheard-of books. These books earned highest honors, yet they have been swept up in the tidal wave of history. How much merit do literary awards actually hold? Obviously, simply winning an award isn’t a guarantee your book will stand the test of time. Perhaps books that snag an award can find their way into the hands of people who read through award lists, but is that all awards are good for?

Continue reading “On the Merit of Literary Awards”

Shakespeare and the Problem with Proto-Feminism

Written Emily Ogden

Earlier this month, one of our contributing general staff members, Eleni Theodoropoulos, wrote an inaugural post for our “The Female Odyssey” column, about women and magic in fairy tales. Today, Emily Ogden contributes to that column as she talks about women in Shakespeare.

If you are a fan of A Midsummer Night’s Dream by William Shakespeare, then I apologize in advance for this installment of our “Female Odyssey” column, in which I may just ruin this play for you. Shakespeare is widely regarded as a “proto-feminist,” one ahead of his time due to the strong female characters that often appear in his Renaissance plays. While I agree that he writes women who “talk the talk”—there are plenty of sassy, brilliant ladies that outwit their male counterparts—as far as being allowed to :walk the walk,” these same women are often completely robbed of agency in his stories.

Continue reading “Shakespeare and the Problem with Proto-Feminism”

Historical Fiction: Do Writers Owe Accuracy to Their Readers?

Written by Grace Mappes

Whenever I think of historical fiction, a memory first comes to mind: I was raving to my then-boyfriend about the way Dan Brown manipulated and speculated upon the relationship between Jesus and Mary Magdalene in The Da Vinci Code, fictionalizing a sexual element that made perfect sense plot-wise to my then-teenage brain (don’t worry y’all, no spoilers here). But when I had finished speaking, my devout-Catholic ex shook his head with a chuckle and asked how I could believe such a thing. Honestly, I didn’t, but his comment stuck with me years later; it made me think about how readers and writers view factual accuracy in historical fiction.

Continue reading “Historical Fiction: Do Writers Owe Accuracy to Their Readers?”

How Call Me By Your Name Needs to be Called by its True Name: Problematic

Written by Jeff Rose

With the recent success from the movie Call Me by Your Name, the book by Andre Aciman has surged in popularity. However, the film and book has been critiqued for several reasons, most notably the seven-year age gap of the two main characters and the fact it’s not breaking new ground in LGBTQ+ storytelling. The film/novel features a romantic relationship between Elio, a seventeen-year-old teenager, and Oliver, a twenty-four-year-old graduate student in Italy.

Continue reading “How Call Me By Your Name Needs to be Called by its True Name: Problematic”