Brevity Blog’s Mini-Reality-Hunger-Festival

March 22, 2010 § 2 Comments


We suspected David Shields eccentric book Reality Hunger: A Manifesto would generate some buzz in the nonfiction world, but to be honest, we hadn’t anticipated so much buzz. He is everywhere these days, book reviews, giving interviews, speaking here and there.

It has been an interesting response to the book, beginning with pure praise and love, insightful reviews, and now generating the inevitable backlash.

So What do we at Brevity think of the book: It is fascinating, sharp, controversial, interesting.

How much of what he says do we agree with: About half.

Do we think truth still matters in nonfiction:  Yes, very much so.

Do we think the novel is dead: No.

Starting today, we are launching a Mini-Reality-Hunger-Festival here on the Brevity Blog.  Join us with your comments, or send us blogposts of your own (we welcome guest bloggers).  We’ll keep it running until the energy expires, which may be three days, a week, into next week, or until the Next Big Thing.

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§ 2 Responses to Brevity Blog’s Mini-Reality-Hunger-Festival

  • One of the reasons we may have a reality hunger is that what passes for reality on television is far from it. In fact, “reality” tv shows are probably more contrived than most other shows and create a skewered vision of what reality is and can be.
    We do have a hunger for reality, and that is for face to face contact with other human beings, for good conversation, laughter, vital presence. We sit in front of screens (as I’m doing now) for a good part of the day and type our words zapping them into cyberspace where they will join the cacophony of virtual communication.

  • Nancy Kael says:

    I couldn’t agree more about the “disappearance” of real conversation, LOL tha we can hear, or others hear ours, if the joke being ciruclated is truly funny. On the other hand, as a single older person, learning to “live alone” my “email friends” (real friends from the past) have been a lifesaver for me, to vent or almost cry on their shoulder, at any time of the day or night.

    But I fear for younger people that all of the technology is taking the place of good old fashioned back fence, or as we do in the country “driver to driver” hello and how’s the weather, and real friends sitting across from you having tea, not in front of you on your screen. We edit ourselves very differently when “composing”our emails, maybe even those who “twitter” than what we might say or hear in tone, or see in body langueage, in a real face to face visit.

    And oh, we miss out on all the smiles that we both need to project and to receive.

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