literary criticism

10: Mind the Gutter

Ben OwenTom talks with blogger and comics aficionado Ben Owen about alternative comics.

The whole episode is a critically-informed love-fest for comics, really, in which Ben praises the formal insights of Scott McLoud, the superhuman drawing of Jaime Hernandez, Lynda Barry’s commitment to emotional truth, and Joe Sacco’s respect for the integrity of individual stories.

6: Fanspeak

Anne MooreJust in time for the new season of Lost, Alana talks with popular culture scholar Anne Moore about television, fan communities, and the pleasures of serial narratives.

Anne’s work questions the conventional association of narrative closure with artistry; she celebrates, instead, the open-ended pleasures of soaps, prime-time dramas, and serialized space operas.  

5: Flashback

Nikhil ChopraTom talks with very short story writer Christine Gentry about flash fiction and an imagined memoir based in her father’s life.

The concentration and brevity of her stories is anything but an accommodation to the short attention span of the contemporary reader.  Instead, Gentry’s one-page pieces ask you to read closely, fill in gaps, and actively contribute to the meaning of the story.  Her longer project seeks to explore and articulate the untold stories of a reticent father.

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