TODAY: In 1952, Pulitzer Prize winner Michael Cunningham is born.
He takes the stale facts and weaves them into something altogether new: A review of Libra, Don DeLillo’s imagining of the life of Lee Harvey Oswald and the events surrounding the JFK assassination. | Book Marks
“New Yorkers choose to gather under the banner that says ‘New York’—which is so elastic it really means nothing at all—and that is exactly what I love about this place.” In the wake of last week’s attack, Zadie Smith on New York City. | NYRB
Taste’s fall fiction issue includes pieces by Helen Phillips, Esmé Weijun Wang, and more. | Taste
“The essay’s roots are in literature, and literature at its best. . . invites you to ask whether you might be somewhat wrong, maybe even entirely wrong, and to imagine why someone else might hate you.” Jonathan Franzen on the essay form, making sense of Donald Trump, and. . . birds. | The Guardian
I wanted there to be a sense that maybe there is something wrong with this guy: An interview with Emily Wilson, the first woman to translate the Odyssey. | The New York Times
From epic legends like Gilgamesh to anecdotes, we tell each other stories every day: Aminatta Forna on the power of empathy. | World Literature Today
“He’s created a leading lady whom he challenges us to despise. But does he despise her?” Roxana Robinson on teaching Madame Bovary. | The New Yorker
“Our spaces were just a place he went to feel famous and cruise for sex, and then, when asked about it, to mock us.” Alexander Chee on Kevin Spacey. | them.