• October 6, 2015

    Henning Mankell

    Henning Mankell

    Best-selling Swedish crime writer Henning Mankell, who created the character of Kurt Wallander, died yesterday at age sixty-seven. The Guardian noted that he “took the existing Swedish tradition of crime writing as a form of leftwing social criticism and gave it international recognition,” and the Los Angeles Times looked back at its own reviews of Mankell over the years, including one from 2006 that rather winningly admired his resistance to the “tendency among some Scandinavian writers (think Ibsen, Strindberg) to cast a sense of gloom over their works.”

    A Mother Jones reporter charged with trespassing at a Louisiana prison is to be tried this week.

    The Rumpus gathered a number of useful responses to the New Yorker’s Kenneth Goldsmith profile, prefacing the links with an apology: “We ran a blog post earlier today about Alec Wilkinson’s pretty crap piece about Kenny Goldsmith in the New Yorker which we characterized as ‘refreshingly even-handed.’ That description is only accurate if you define even-handed as a several-thousand-word tongue-bath in the pages of a huge magazine which both ignored and dismissed many of Goldsmith’s critics.”

    After the death of Carmen Balcells, the godmother of twentieth-century Latin American literature known as La Mamá Grande, it remains uncertain what will happen to her literary agency—“as much a cult of personality as an institution,” writes Rachel Donadio in the New York Times—which still represents everyone from Isabel Allende to the estate of Gabriel García Márquez. Balcells’s merger talks with Andrew Wylie (whom she claimed did not have “the flexibility and sensibility of a woman”) seem not to have worked out. “Clearly this marriage had not been consummated,” the London agent Andrew Nurnberg told the Times, saying that he had been in talks with Balcells himself very recently. Now Donadio predicts “a land grab involving some of the biggest personalities in world publishing.”

    It’s worth revisiting (or visiting) ten of the best pieces produced by independent multimedia organization Novara, who are raising money this month: There are interviews with Jacqueline Rose (also reviewed in the fall Bookforum) and Jeremy Corbyn, as well as segments that explain when white people were invented, and what neoliberalism actually is.