She could do whatever she wanted. Continue reading →, Tagged as Anne Enright, Book, Booker Prize, Fiction, Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Ian McEwan, Jonathan Franzen, Literature, Novels, Reading, Being British, I know virtually nothing about baseball. But Franzen is also an incredible writer. Ignore the tweets, read the book.

She was feeling more honest and acting less honest. I’m not sure that amounts to empathy, which is a word that tends to get used imprecisely a lot of the time.

But the Audubon that emerges from Franzen’s essay is a band of once-scrappy conservationists who have grown content to peddle squeaky plush toys and holiday cards; we’ve seized on climate change, apparently, in a … He gets deep into the folds of his characters’ hearts, and he does it with care. Pip hopes that working for the Sunlight Project – a Wikileaks-style organisation which traffics secrets – will lead her to some answers about her origins including the identity of her father. Upcoming public appearances with Jonathan Franzen. Yeah, definitely. He is famously fond of birds. Drinking deeply of others’ sadness isn’t necessary, Harris thinks; instead, we can learn to see clearly, feel compassion for others as they suffer, and still remain in a state of calm, uplift, and wellbeing. The climate apocalypse is coming. The official Facebook page for Jonathan Franzen, managed by his publishers Farrar, Straus and Giroux and Picador USA. What’s good to you? Let me ask: when you read fiction, do you always want to empathize with the characters? They’re about life, and family, stability and change, and the reality that, despite the best of our intentions, we are all deeply flawed creatures. Harris isn’t advocating anything like that, of course, but his distinction – between empathy (semi-sharing in others’ experience) and compassion (expressing care without sharing others’ experience as deeply) – seems really valuable. However, I found Franzen’s non-fiction work to be much more readable in terms of content and also more manageable in terms of length with this collection clocking in at around 300 pages. Which is exactly the condition that we live in all the time, with everyone. The Iraqi orphans thing is gross, of course, but it’s also surprising to me: I think the primary reason I love Franzen’s novels is his psychological accuracy. I wonder about this distinction in the context of Franzen’s books. It does feature a lot of baseball especially in the first few chapters and some other passages which I admit were kind of lost on me. I’m listening to a podcast conversation between author Sam Harris and psychologist Paul Bloom, and they’re discussing Bloom’s upcoming book, tentatively titled Against Empathy. Island Conservation talks with Jonathan Franzen about writing, birding, and effective conservation. But why oh why oh WHY did all the characters have to have almost the exact same names across the generations?! But the book as a whole is more about relationships which is something anyone can identify with (baseball fan or not) and the college experience which most people can identify with (American or not). That book, a National Book Award winner, remains one of the best and most popular American works of literary fiction of this new century. ( Log Out /  Actually she was going out to dinner with Duane and spending the night with him. Change ), You are commenting using your Twitter account. The most interesting moment so far: Harris argues that we get empathy and compassion wrong when we imagine that we’re supposed to feel what others feel, that we’re meant to be permeable to their emotions. It’s what makes the books so readable. Do Book Blog Reviews Have Real Influence? In fact, The Corrections alone is full of examples – I don’t particularly want to spend much time within any of his characters, since their flaws irritate me as much as they irritate each other. In The Corrections, as you mention, Alfred is a really difficult old man who irritates both his wife and children, and you the reader share in their annoyance. The author talks birds, climate failure, and how to find meaning in dark times. Continue reading →, Tagged as Baseball, Book, Book Review, Book Reviews, Chad Harbach, Fiction, Jonathan Franzen, Novel, Novels, Philip Roth, Reading, The Art of Fielding, The Corrections. But the experience of understanding them on that level is interesting. The internet has turned on him, his book sales are down and the TV adaptation of his last novel has stalled. Franzen’s essays are witty, shrewd and poetic, full of subtly orchestrated digressions, and eminently quotable. Hit enter to search or ESC to close I enjoyed his most recent novel ‘Freedom’ but I definitely struggled with ‘The Corrections’  which I thought would have been much improved with a bit of decent editing. If you judge exclusively from the headlines that appear periodically on social media, you can be forgiven for concluding that, for one reason or another, Jonathan Franzen is overrated, or a sexist, or otherwise an asshole. (Marilynne Robinson does this too, but not on the same scale.). Franzen reflects on the role of the writer in times of crisis. And do you ever find yourself retreating to a Harris-style posture of compassion – caring for the characters, but not wanting to be on particularly intimate terms with them? If I can relate to a character, on the other hand, then I can feel it, or I can focus on other aspects of the story, or both. Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: You are commenting using your account. People are funny; Franzen isn’t the first incredible artist to act the fool. Unauthorised use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and owner is strictly prohibited. Where to start? His books stand on their own, and they’re astonishing. ( Log Out /  Franzen introduces his characters to you the way you get to know people in real life – gradually, from present to past, and always with epiphanies that make you feel closer even when they’re repellent. Sometimes, it can even disable us, diminishing our well-being and making it more difficult to respond to others effectively. In preparation for this post, I read all three novels back-to-back, knocking out about almost 1700 pages in about two weeks. Posts about Jonathan Franzen written by scarsonwiki. Here is my list of my biggest literary disappointments: One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel Garcia Marquez, I read Love in the Time of Cholera and really enjoyed it so I was looking forward to reading One Hundred Years of Solitude.

So yeah, I’m perfectly willing to extend a little idiosyncrasy credit to someone capable of writing this. Franzen at Denmark’s Heartland Festival, May 2019. I wrote a post a while ago about the books I never finished but I have also read quite a few books I may as well not have finished. ‘How to Be Alone’ by Jonathan Franzen is an interesting collection of fourteen essays loosely based around the theme of solitude and privacy. But then Franzen takes you even further back into Alfred’s past, and you understand that he was difficult long before he had Alzheimer’s. Jonathan Franzen TEDTalk at the Rio Theatre in Santa Cruz, CA, December 2019, Jonathan Franzen Discussing The Peanuts Papers with Andrew Blauner at The Charles M. Schulz Museum, November 2019, Birding with Jonathan Franzen, Birds of North America with Jason Ward, July 2019, Franzen at Denmark’s Heartland Festival, May 2019, Franzen at Georgetown University, March 2018, Franzen on The Louisiana Channel – Louisiana Museum of Modern Art, 2016, Franzen on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert, October 2015, Franzen interviewed By Kerri Miller, Talking Volumes, 2015, Jonathan Franzen Goes Birding, The New Yorker Radio Hour, 2017.

His novels tend to bind a group of people - often a family -… Franzen’s parents were Irene, born as Irene super, and Earl T. Franzen. Continue reading →, Tagged as Book, Book Review, Book Reviews, Fiction, Jonathan Franzen, Literary Fiction, Literature, Novels, Purity, Reading, Reviews, Satire, ‘How to Be Alone’ by Jonathan Franzen is an interesting collection of fourteen essays loosely based around the theme of solitude and privacy.

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