10.14.2004

This passage from an article on the National Book Award nominees is so wild:
The list of fiction finalists consisted of five female authors, all living in New York City, and included two first-time novelists, Sarah Shun-lien Bynum, for "Madeleine Is Sleeping" (Harcourt), and Christine Schutt, for "Florida" (TriQuarterly Books/Northwestern University Press). This is the first time the fiction short list has not included any men.
What could account for this...anomaly? Did men not publish enough books this year? Is the whole publishing industry falling apart?

My instinct, of course, is to say that indeed, the world has changed and our work is done. But first, I think I'll just wait for the inevitable essay in (1) Harpers, (2) The New Yorker, or (3) The Atlantic that decries the awards as (a) "irrelevent" in the marketplace, (b) "immaterial" to the literary world, and/or (c) simply "outdated."

Maybe it's just the sky that's falling, no?

-Lauren
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