Monday, June 30, 2008
Earlier I was struck by the Wright Morris quote that Andrew Wingfield shared with me in our interview, "Writing is finding out what you don't yet know about what you know," as well as Wingfield's take on that. Then I read this excellent nonfiction piece by Bill Donahue in the Washington Post about larger-than-life American Indian activist Russell Means and the subsequent discussion, which I found to be one of the best WaPost online discussions I've read in a long time (despite my inane question). A quote from Donahue in the discussion: "I think that anyone should be allowed to write about anyone." This made me think of the PBS film "Nat Turner: A Troublesome Property," which discusses how Nat Turner's story has been told and retold since the 1831 revolt and how William Styron's 1967 The Confessions of Nat Turner lit an angry intellectual debate (Styron wrote about it here). Then I read this T.C. Boyle story in a January New Yorker (I'm catching up) that takes on three perspectives, including those of a Japanese couple. Read at least one of these things, but come back and tell me: where we are with all this today?