Possibility by Patricia Vigderman
Essays Against Despair

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Frequent illumination within the density of compression, as the writer challenges readers to determine what they’re thinking and feeling about what she’s thinking and feeling.
-Kirkus

Synopsis

"Reading Patricia Vigderman is like attending an ideal dinner party, where everyone has read your favorite books. Her essays wind particular passages of Proust, or George Eliot, or W.G. Sebald around personal moments; David Foster Wallace's story 'The Depressed Person' is threaded throughout an essay about her own relationship with a loved one's serious depression. Vigderman's responses are fresh and original and her sounding of our collective literary treasures are likely to send you back to read them again, now overlaid with her embroidery."—Mona Simpson

In this accessible collection of essays, Patricia Vigderman attempts to translate some of life's disordered events into the orderly happiness of art. She encounters manatees, children, and snakes; with Henry Adams, Marcel Proust, and W.G. Sebald; with Texas landscape, Vertigo, and Johannes Vermeer. Adams, in Japan after his wife's death, found in the elaborate ritual of the tea ceremony and in the discomforts of a rural inn, occasions for the wit to face down grief. His letters to friends coax laughter from strangeness and loss. Like Adams, Vigderman has a stylist's passion for revelatory detail, and for the pleasure of immersion in a world. Smart, generous, and probing, her discoveries play with direct experience, exploring the interaction of life and art as "magic you can walk in and out of."

Patricia Vigderman's work has appeared in The Nation, The New York Times, Georgia Review, Raritan, and others. She was a Literature Fellow at the Liguria Center for the Arts and Humanities in Italy and teaches at Kenyon College.

 

About Patricia Vigderman

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Patricia Vigderman is the author of The Memory Palace of Isabella Stewart Gardner (Sarabande Books, 2007), bringing the world of a century-old Boston museum and its eccentric founder into harmony with present reality. Other efforts to reconcile life's discordant notes have led her to the ruined monuments of antiquity and its beautiful salvaged remnants, to an unexpected love affair with film, and into the endlessly unfolding mysteries of nature, language, art, and love. In 2010 she was a Literature Fellow at the Liguria Center for the Arts and Humanities in Bogliasco, Italy. She lives in Cambridge, Massachusetts, and Gambier, Ohio, where she teaches in the English department at Kenyon College.
 
Published March 29, 2013 by Sarabande Books. 154 pages
Genres: Arts & Photography, Literature & Fiction. Non-fiction
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Kirkus

Above average
on Dec 23 2012

Frequent illumination within the density of compression, as the writer challenges readers to determine what they’re thinking and feeling about what she’s thinking and feeling.

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