(urth) OT: R.A. Lafferty essay anthology

Daniel Petersen danielottojackpetersen at gmail.com
Mon Jun 20 11:03:50 PDT 2011

Good suggestions, gwern.  John C Wright and James Stoddard have also been
suggested - and now Tim Powers comes to mind as well.


On Mon, Jun 20, 2011 at 5:02 PM, Gwern Branwen <gwern0 at gmail.com> wrote:

> From Daniel Otto Jack Petersen's R.A. Lafferty blog
> http://antsofgodarequeerfish.blogspot.com/2011/06/first-ever-book-of-essays-on-lafferty.html
> :
> > I'm delighted to report that I've been asked to write a chapter for an
> upcoming book of essays about the fiction of R. A. Lafferty (the first
> ever!). This is being pulled together from various sources by Andrew
> Ferguson (who recently wrote his MA dissertation on Lafferty's carnivalesque
> world-building narrative strategy - a very lengthy in-depth, technical, and
> thrilling read!). It may be sometime before the proposed book sees
> publication and, of course, my chapter will only be included if it 'makes
> the grade'. But I'm honoured and thrilled to be asked to contribute and to
> have this opportunity.
> >
> > The contributors to the book will be looking at Lafferty and his large,
> diverse, and brilliantly/notoriously unconventional body of fiction from
> various angles. I've been asked to cover Lafferty as a Catholic/Christian
> storyteller, sort of an Irish American G. K. Chesterton. He was one of the
> very best of the 2oth century and puts so much 'Christian art' to shame. I
> will probably begin by looking at the praise heaped on him by the New Wave
> s.f. movement from which he emerged and how 'new weird'/'urban fantasy'
> writers like Neil Gaiman still praise and emulate him, none of whom share
> his Catholic faith, yet all of whom find a companion, mentor, and
> inspiration in him.
> >
> M> Then the main body of the chapter will look at how Lafferty's
> fiction evinces his Christian worldview inventively, invitingly,
> feistily, and generously, mainly in the short story 'And Walk Now
> Gently Through the Fire'. But probably also with reference to some
> elements in the novels Past Master, Arrive At Easterwine, and Fourth
> Mansions, as well as other short stories like 'In Deepest Glass',
> 'Symposium', and 'Days of Grass, Days of Straw'.
> (I've suggested he contact Gene Wolfe or Neil Gaiman about this, but
> maybe other people here have things they'd like to contribute.)
> --
> gwern
> http://www.gwern.net
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