September 23, 2014

Word Traveling: On Emotions and Eula Biss’ “No Man’s Land”

It is hard, admittedly, to finish a creative nonfiction book. Perhaps because they are driven by emotions—often dominantly singular, negatively singular: hatred, loss, anger. These emotions wittingly, consciously creep into the reader and weigh her down with heaviness and sighs, rendering her helpless and boneless to the point that taking a break from the book is necessary. That is how I feel mostly with narratives detailing collective pain: diaspora, slavery, racial discrimination, corruption, death, violence, injustice. James Baldwin’s. Jamaica Kincaid’s.  (And perhaps Joan Didion’s. No, I haven’t read the pile of Didions for the sheer reason that it is not the […]