Psychology, Physiology, Theology and Modern-Day Travel: “Flights” by Olga Tokarczuk (Fitzcarraldo Editions)

On Art and Aesthetics

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I try to read a good amount of contemporary literature and most of it still seems to adhere to older conventions of form and content. Our lifestyles have evolved way too rapidly in the past few decades but I suppose our storytelling has not—it doesn’t quite reflect our interconnected reality accurately, as in it continues to be largely “local”. And because I am very interested in the whole world, fiction that is very parochial can be very suffocating and boring to me. Occasionally, I do come across authors who will wander confidently across space and time (like Kanishk Tharoor did in his excellent collection Swimmer Among the Stars)—but such projects tend to be rare.

Flights by Olga Tokarczuk (2007) translated by Jennifer Croft (2017)

After Tharoor, it was Polish novelist Olga Tokarczuk who possessed that…

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