Refusing To Condescend: Johanna Skibsrud and ‘Difficult’ Literature BY MARTHA SCHABAS

John Banville said a few years ago that he thinks the novel as a form has become something tired and childish. I hope he’s since read Johanna Skibsrud. One of the most exciting qualities in her writing is that equally, in form and content, it refuses to condescend. It is intellectually satisfying in a way that feels as riveting as coming across bits of staggeringly articulate theory—you’re amazed that such elusive phenomena and slippery feeling has been expressed so actively and totally.

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