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Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Shteyngart's Super Sad True Love Story (2010)

Some commentators, from the best of intentions, have assured readers that this is a good novel and not merely a good Jewish novel.  But of course Super Sad True Love Story is a Jewish novel ---what white man could ever have written it?  It is drenched in Jewish life, talk, attitude: it tells us how distant even the best of the whites are from the Jewish men that pass them on the streets; and it is written from a particular compound of emotions that no white man could possibly simulate.  To deny that this is a Jewish novel is to deprive the Jews of their one basic right: the right to cry out their difference.

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