Today's Liberal News

Lily Meyer

In Defense of Fakeness

Arguably, no mode of writing has influenced the past decade of novels more than autofiction, a catchall term for books that call themselves fiction while claiming to be rooted, in some way, in their authors’ real lives. Amid this boom, critics and readers alike have shown a certain anxiety over how based in fact a novel can be—and how anyone might know, given that no autofiction writer purports to be telling the complete, unadulterated truth.

On Rape Narratives and the Surprising Value of Plot

At the bookstore where I used to work, we shelved fiction in four separate categories. Crime novels shared a wall with speculative fiction; romance had a set of freestanding shelves. The rest of the fiction room was devoted to literary fiction, which, unlike the others, we never identified by genre name. The publishing industry tends to treat literary as a descriptor, a nod to a work’s artistic quality or aspirations.

An Emotional Framework for Understanding the End of the Pandemic

GETTY / ARSH RAZIUDDIN / THE ATLANTICMy earliest memories are connected by a sense of fear without the threat of harm. I remember being frightened by news stories, dark basements, and even a painting by a family friend. I was an imaginative kid, and these memories are ones of invented dread: A tabloid photo of a burning building once shook me up for a week, though I had never even seen a fire. In part, these made-up fears were the result of a lucky, protected childhood.

The Surprising Value of a Wandering Mind

(Yael Malka)In college, I took a three-semester class sequence on European intellectual history taught by a long-tenured professor, Mary Gluck, who lectured straight through each session, usually reserving the last five minutes for questions. To some, this model was a nightmare; I loved it.