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Artful

Ali Smith

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Description

“A stimulating combination of literary criticism, essay, and fiction” (The New Yorker) from the incomparable Ali Smith

Artful is a celebration of literature’s worth in and to the world—it is about the things art can do, the things art is made of, and the quicksilver nature of all artfulness. A magical hybrid that refuses to be tied down to either fiction or the essay form, Artful is narrated by a character who is haunted—literally—by a former lover, the writer of a series of lectures about art and literature. Ali Smith’s heady powers as a novelist and short story writer harmonize with her keen perceptions as a reader and critic to form a living thing that reminds us that life and art are never separate.

Publishers Weekly Review

Oct 22, 2012 – This contemplative, electrifying, and transformative book comes in four sections, originally delivered as lectures on comparative literature at St. Anne’s College, Oxford. Readers, however, won’t find themselves on the other side of the lectern. Instead, Smith (There but for the), writing in the first person but not necessarily as Ali Smith, opens with grief: the I-persona has recently lost her longtime love and, still in the throes of despair a year later, turns to the papers and research left on her beloved’s desk, ostensibly for a series of talks on literature—the substance of which becomes much of Smith’s actual lectures. Through riveting reflections on the limitations and the limitlessness of stories, Smith considers four aspects of the endeavor of creation: on “time,” “form,” “edge,” and “offer and reflection.” Yet what Smith also provides is the I-persona’s own journey, through her anguish, through her responses to her beloved’s notes and ideas (which the reader also reads) and through some “real” life (visits with a therapist, some mentions of work, etc.). The results are redemptive for everyone, testifying with singular clarity and wit to the immutable necessity for art.
Artful
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  • $9.99
  • Available on iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, and Mac.
  • Category: Literary Criticism
  • Published: Jan 24, 2013
  • Publisher: Penguin Publishing Group
  • Seller: Penguin Group (USA) Inc.
  • Print Length: 256 Pages
  • Language: English
  • Requirements: To view this book, you must have an iOS device with iBooks 1.3.1 or later and iOS 4.3.3 or later, or a Mac with iBooks 1.0 or later and OS X 10.9 or later.

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