essays

Goodbye to Algonquin's Oak Room, E. B. White Answers the ASPCA, and More

by
Evan Smith Rakoff
2.3.12

Melville House wonders when publishers will speak out about Amazon; New York City's Algonquin Hotel announced that when it reopens this spring after a renovation, the famed Oak Room will be gone; E. B. White answers a charge levied by the ASPCA; and more

Remembering Wislawa Szymborska and Dorothea Tanning, Paul Auster's War of Words, and More

by
Evan Smith Rakoff
2.2.12

Nobel prize-winning poet Wislawa Szymborska, as well as Surrealist artist and poet Dorothea Tanning, passed away yesterday in their respective countries; novelist Paul Auster has engaged in a war of words with Tayyip Erdogan, the prime minister of Turkey; Open Letters Monthly examines the hidden life of Virginia Woolf's institutionalized half-sister, Laura Makepeace Stephen; and other news.

On Essays: Literature’s Most Misunderstood Form

by
Michael Depp
7.1.02

This is not an essay. Though maybe, in a way, it is. Because it's a strange thing about essays—even talking about them, trying to get at what they are, it's hard not to cleave to the spirit of the essay, that inconclusive, most outwardly formless of forms, which spills and seeps into so many other kinds of writing-memoir, feature, commentary, review—and punctuates every assertion with a qualification, a measure of doubt, an alternate possibility.

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