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New Yorker: Out Loud

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Memoir in the Age of TMI

April 14th, 2015

Episode 419 of 447 episodes

On this week’s Out Loud podcast, Leslie Jamison, who recently wrote about Chris Kraus’s memoiristic novels, and Joshua Rothman, who has written about the autobiographical fiction of Karl Ove Knausgaard and Elena Ferrante, join David Haglund and Amelia Lester to discuss the state of the memoir in an age of ubiquitous self-documentation via social media. They discuss the evolution of so-called “confessional literature,” why discussions of autobiographical writing are so often influenced by the gender of the writer, and how authors use memoir to explore ideas about both themselves and the world. In the not-so-distant past, Rothman says, “people kept diaries, and then you took a creative-writing workshop and wrote thinly disguised autobiographical fiction about your life. And now, part of what’s defined the last decade or so is a lot of new ways to accomplish this.”

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