Monday, September 22, 2014

The most important French writer you've never heard of

The Guardian calls Emmanuel Carrère "the most important French writer you've never heard of," and I quite agree. (Except for all the important French writers I've actually never heard of.)

It's an interesting profile for a few reasons, which are maybe all the same reason.

1. Major themes are identity and memory. The Moustache was brilliant on these points. (There's a novel that has really aged well in my memory.)

2. He seems to have found his niche writing nonfiction novels. Whether he recounts episodes from his own life, or somebody else's, what's the difference? (Must get my hands on his book about Philip K. Dick.)

3. He seems particularly interested these days in exploring his Russian heritage, which interests me in hopes that it may shed light on my own desire to know my Polishness. Which has nothing to do with the culture per se, but rather the need to know from whence you come.
I stopped writing fiction and began to write "non-fiction novels." I tried to write about the world and about myself, describing reality through my own experience.

Check him out in interview with the CBC's Eleanor Wachtel (Writers & Company).

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