2009 | 8 | 4(25) | 429-439
Article title

THIS UNWANTED, INDISPENSABLE WANDERER. THE NARRATOR, TODAY (Ten niechciany, niezbedny wlóczega: narrator, dzis)

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It is a critical essay that presents the interpretation of the position of the storyteller at the turn of the 20th and 21st century - the time when everyone who deserves the name of an artist is conscious of following in the century-old footsteps of the European and world writers, inquiring about the meaning and quality of our existence. The authoress devotes a more detailed analysis to the several prose writers of the English language - Anglophone by birth, or by choice (Graham Swift, possibly the most British of them all; the Irishman Seamus Deane; the Japanese-born Kazuo Ishiguro) - and to the Iberian and Ibero-American authors (Javier Marias, Javier Cercas, Roberto Bolano). The special attention is given to the ingenious, German-writing Winfred Georg Maximilian Sebald (b. 1944, d. 2001). The finale presents three Polish writers (Wieslaw Mysliwski, Magdalena Tulli and the debuting Mikolaj Lozinski). The title of the essay recalls the words of Tulli: that the narrator should be mercilessly aware of how slim his chances were. Yet, let him not remain silent. Let him warn and encourage the imagination, for this is the hope and the future of literature: it co-creates us, our memory and dreams. It allows the longing for the community to continue.
  • Alina Brodzka-Wald, Instytut Badan Literackich PAN, ul. Nowy Swiat 72, 00-330 Warszawa, Poland
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