Proust Footage Discovered, Audre Lorde on Arts Funding, and More


Every day Poets & Writers Magazine scans the headlines—from publishing reports to academic announcements to literary dispatches—for all the news that creative writers need to know. Here are today’s stories:

A Canadian professor claims to have found the only existing footage of Marcel Proust on film. The black and white clip, shot at a 1904 wedding, shows a man descending the stairs in a bowler hat and a pearl-grey formal suit. (Guardian)

At Brain Pickings, Maria Popova digs up an old flyer Audre Lorde wrote for an NEA-funded reading series in the 1970s. Lorde touches on how an NEA grant helped her realize “poets must teach what they know if we are to continue being.”

Poet Hai-Dang Phan muses on how to intertwine poetry and research by considering the work of Susan Howe, Natasha Trethewey, and Robin Coste Lewis. (Harriet)

The U.S. Census Bureau has released preliminary estimates stating that bookstore sales rose by 2.5 percent from 2015 to 2016. (Publishers Weekly)

“We talked about the expectation of what the black father is supposed to do or has not done. And I think we work against that.” F. Douglas Brown and Geffrey Davis talk about the chapbook they cowrote, Begotten, which addresses issues of fatherhood. (PBS NewsHour)

“My keen yearning curiously adores your appetite.” Siobhan Roberts looks back at Christopher Strachey’s 1950s computer program that generated love letters and its role in the history of artificial intelligence. (New Yorker)

At Vulture, Christian Lorentzen makes a case for apathy as the key to the work of Nobel laureate J. M. Coetzee.

Jia Tolentino contemplates a frequently overlooked young-adult book, Maud Hart Lovelace’s 1950 novel Emily of Deep Valley, and its simultaneously old-fashioned and progressive depiction of Syrian Americans in Minnesota. (New Yorker)