Prufrock's Page

Tuesday, January 31, 2006

Alive And Kicking

John Freeman asserts that the novel is still relevant and is still alive, despite the fact that realism has been hijacked by the movies: "...this is a blessing in disguise, because it allows novelists a freer range to imagine the less tangible world. It is no accident that the first billionaire novelist owes her fortune to a make-believe boy wizard who goes off to school to fight the forces of good and evil. How else better to capture the open-ended horizon of what we imagine in our childhood? The same goes for adult life. The last novel to get a big bump from a book prize was Yann Martel's Booker winner, The Life of Pi, the story of a man stranded on a raft with a Bengal tiger.

Rather more to the point: "Novels may once have existed to show us the world, but what they have always been best at is coaxing us into believing we can imagine how something feels on the inside - no matter how far from our experience."


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