Well-intentioned, print-oriented people are forever asking, “Doesn’t it upset you to see your characters taken over by other people, out of your control?” My reply is generally a mild one: “But isn’t that the point of writing for the theater?”
The blood jet is poetry—these words of Sylvia Plath have reverberated through my experience of reading and rereading the fifteen stories of Prison Noir.
And certain to provoke a variety of reactions, an astringent but objective consideration of the difficulties that confront a (woman) writer—among them (men) writers, from whom Oates quotes with quite devastating effect.
In 1984 the American Academy and Institute of Arts and Letters awarded one of its distinguished fiction prizes to a new and presumably young Chicano writer named Danny Santiago, for his first novel, Famous All Over Town. Subsequent to the award it was revealed, with some embarrassment, that the newly discovered Chicano writer was not Chicano at all …
Books and articles about the life of Joyce Carol Oates.
“You, Charlie, must realize, now — a little late, you might believe — that he who marries a novelist must expect to see himself in print long before he sees himself in clover.”
The old farmhouse was razed years ago, the very site of its foundation filled with earth, all trace of its existence obliterated. Yet I see it clearly, and the lilac tree that grew close beside the back door, a child-size tree into which I climbed, a dreamy child given to solitude in places near the house, near you.
Though frequently denounced and often misunderstood by a somewhat genteel literary community, my writing is, at least in part, an attempt to memorialize my parents’ vanished world; my parents’ lives. Sometimes directly, sometimes in metaphor.
What emerges is a fascinating portrait of the artist as a young woman, fully engaged with her world and her culture—a writer who paradoxically thought of herself as “invisible” while becoming one of the most respected, honored, discussed, and controversial figures in American letters.
Joyce Carol Oates writes on the rise and fall of Mike Tyson in a series of essays following his career.
The scandal of Holyfield-Tyson II forces admirers of boxing to consider: Why is biting any more demonic than fighting itself? Its demonism isn’t conventional, that’s all.
Mike Tyson’s conviction on rape charges in Indianapolis is a minor tragedy for the beleaguered sport of boxing, but a considerable triumph for women’s rights. For once, though bookmakers were giving 5-1 odds that Tyson would be acquitted, and the mood of the country seems distinctly conservative, a jury resisted the outrageous defense that a rape victim is to be blamed for her own predicament.
There is an unsettling air about Tyson, with his impassive death’s-head face, his unwavering stare, and his refusal to glamorize himself in the ring—no robe, no socks, only the signature black trunks and shoes—that the violence he unleashes against his opponents is somehow just.
Confronted with an opponent like “Bonecrusher” Smith, who violates the decorum of the ring by not fighting, Tyson is at a loss; he hits his man after the bell, in an adolescent display of frustration.
Drenched with suspense and dread, and featuring the razor-sharp prose that has made Joyce Carol Oates a living legend, Evil Eye shows love as sporadically magical, mysterious, and murderous.