MARGIN: Exploring Modern Magical Realism
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21 March 2005
Topic: March 2005
SUBMISSIONS ADDRESS UPDATE If you are interested in submitting to Margin via e-mail, please direct your submissions to submissions (at) The address at this domain is extremely reliable and replaces our previous service at Flashmail, which lost about 5 weeks of submissions on file in our previous mailbox on March 17, 2005.

Reviewer Stuart Klawans in Newsday magazine describes Jonathan Safran Foer's latest novel, Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close as a combination of magical realism in the style of Marc Chagall with an updated Huck Finn-like quality. Klawans writes: "Which brings me back to the ostensible reason for telling a sad story humorously: to be truthful. As the charming, imaginative probabilities piled up in Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close, I began to think of another small and voluble survivor named Oskar: the narrator of Gunter Grass' The Tin Drum."

And here's another reference to Chagall... Fernanda Eberstadt, reviewer for yesterday's The New York Times, refers to the artist in magical realist author Steve Stern's latest work, The Angel of Forgetfulness, when describing the ancient character Keni Shendeldecker, a once-footloose and fancy-free artist of "Chagall-like magic realist paintings of ghetto scenes" who becomes the love interest of a college student in 1969. Think that's improbable? Of course it is, but so are many other fabulist elements in Stern's mystical novel, including dybbuks, angels and golems.

"Can multiculturalism have a white face? If Caribbean-American novelist Robert Antoni is any indication, the answer has to be yes," asserts Chauncey Mabe, Books Editor for The Sun-Sentinel & South Florida Interactive. Magical realist author Robert Antoni (Divina Trace, Blessed Is the Fruit and My Grandmother's Erotic Folktales) will read from his new novel Carnival at 8 p.m. on Wednesday March 23 at Books & Books in Coral Gables, FL (305.442.4408). The Broward County Main Library will also present "An Evening with Robert Antoni" at 7:30 p.m. on Thursday March 24 at the Bienes Center in Fort Lauderdale. This event is free, but reservations are requested (954.357.7401).

FANS OF OPERA AND MAGICAL REALISM: Composer Hector Armienta specializes in bilingual operas. Among these are Un Camino de Fe/A Journey of Faith and Los Conejos y las Conejas/The Coyotes and the Rabbits, as well as an in-progress trilogy of operas, which he describes as containing a bit of "Mexican and Latin American magical realism" based on his abuela's experiences. Armienta recently made his world premiere in the lauded "Words and Music" concert spotlight in Oakland, where his composition for narrator, chorus and orchestra based on the prize-winning poem "Where Waters Meet" by Sonoma County fifth grader Hailee Brumley was performed last Saturday.

Posted by at 9:08 AM PST
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