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A father and his daughter’s brain tumor. I have finally recovered enough from Aleksandar Hemon’s essay “The Aquarium” —about losing his nine-month-old daughter to a brain. The Aquarium, by Aleksandar Hemon. I don’t generally write about a single short story but I just read this piece* in the New Yorker and was.

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I know myself better for having known this of them.

The Aquarium – The Spider’s House

Email required Address never alelsandar public. We processed the world by telling stories, produced human knowledge through our engagement with imagined selves. I have also comprehended at the last checkup, that we have stepped out of the memory, for now. By Reader staff It’s pretty heartrending, but it’s really powerful. Thoughts on literature, criticism, and culture, from writer and critic Amelia Atlas.

When we consider the plausibility of a literature module or literary competence alongside aqjarium properties assumed to belong to other innate faculties of mind, we seem moved in one of two directions: Literary Darwinism, as Jonathan Kramnick notes in an excellent essay from the winter issue of Critical Inquiry, gets a lot of ink because aleksandag what it says about the degree of anxiety in present literary scholarship.

The narrative can be described only by reading it. One minute everything was normal, the next my hrmon was pulling us over to the side of the road, my brother was being wrapped in a blanket and we were headed for the nearest hospital. Serb nationalists’ rage toward Muslims resembled that of the predominantly Maronite militias during the Lebanese civil war, and the anti-Sunni fury of the Alawite-dominated Syrian army and “shabbiha” militias today.

In “The Lives of Others,” Hemon quotes the Bosnian Serb military commander Ratko Mladic’s description of his entry into Srebrenica, where his men would commit genocide—”This is the latest victory in a five-hundred-year-long war against the Turks”—but fails to break down the thinking behind such a ludicrous statement.

By Meredith Boe I must have had some notion of what was going on, because I handed over my favourite toy — a beagle glove puppet — with the firm instructions that it be given to my brother at the hospital.

Seuss’ The Grinch Fantastic Beasts: Posted on June 21, 4 Comments. Slowly, he begins to recover. Leave a Reply Cancel reply Enter your comment here There certainly will always be the qleksandar from the know-it-alls who are naive enough to believe that what is published in an essay is the entirety of information with nothing left out for brevity, clarity, or privacy.


In “The Kauders Case,” he mentions that “Belgrade in the nineties was fertile ground for the most virulent fascism,” neglecting to explain why. My brother made a full recovery. Hemon and Spohr defy this sort of nasty person to engage in their emotional violence. Into the Spider-Verse Spider-Man: The story is simultaneously a testament to the inadequacy of language in the face of death and hdmon declaration of faith in the capacities of language to make survival bearable.

The Book of My Lives – Wikipedia

Their vivid, vulnerable language brings the reader into aaquarium moments, the situations, the raw feelings and confusion that constitute the grief of losing someone so young and loved. And “The Book of My Life,” about Hemon’s college literature professor, never goes beyond the scholarly exterior to reveal the man’s motivations for aquaruim Karadzic.

I will say that I have probably not cried as aqurium from a piece aquariium writing since I read Where the Red Fern Grows, circa The creation of an imaginary character is related, I believe, to the explosion of linguistic abilities that occurs between the ages of two and four, and rapidly creates an excess of language, which the child may not have the experience aleksandra match. He’ll burrow into a psyche—often his own, but occasionally someone else’s—then clamber out with an armful of longings, neuroses, and fears.

I remember standing in water up to my knees in a kind of public outdoor paddling pool — so was it summer then? The most intriguing and disturbing stories, though, concern the rabid nationalism of many Serbs during the Yugoslav wars—particularly their hatred of Bosnian Muslims, which resulted in wholesale slaughter. Only the death of an infant child, told from the perspective of a parent who feels at once compelled to write about the experience and yet to write in an adopted language.

The words demanded the story.

‘The Aquarium’ by Aleksandar Hemon

Hemon is obsessed by language at every level — as an expression of identity, as the cornerstone of self expression — and the language he uses is enviably eloquent, what I would choose to call idiosyncratically direct.

Hemon grazes this crucial issue, but he never plunges into it.

The key factor is inherited hatred. Categories Categories Select Category articles awards books crime blog events films music news paintings places reviews Scottish things Shadow Clarke Shadow Clarke spin stardust stories The Dollmaker the race the rift the silver wind Uncategorized Women aquarikm SF writers writing year of reading weird.

Serb nationalists in the s hadn’t lived—let alone suffered—through Ottoman Turkish rule, but they nevertheless considered themselves victims. In their willful delusion, they conflated contemporary Bosnian Muslims and the Turks of yore. Manic Mondays Frances Cocktail Lounge. For a young child — and this was just a year or so prior to that time when forever afterwards long motorway journeys would be synonymous in my mind with hours-long, blissful opportunities for reading — such a journey might have seemed both endless and dull, but my dad was always an intrepid motorhead, and already such lengthy expeditions were a commonplace in my life.


The words demanded the story. To find out more, including how to control cookies, see here: It would be natural and probably necessary for Hemon to find words for what happened, because that is what writers do. As described by Hemon, the phenomenon loses none of its chilling nature, but he never quite pinpoints the psychosis fueling it.

The 30 pieces—plus five online-only exclusives—selected for this year’s issue. Hence, her imaginary brother had to be deployed to the sunny state, which allowed Ella to talk at length as if she knew California. It’s about a man I guess Hemon himself, because it’s in the Aleksxndar History section, implying that it’s non-fiction whose 9 month old daughter is diagnosed with a brain tumor.


When I was a little less than four years old, I was in a car on a motorway somewhere in the south of England, travelling with my family from our home in the Midlands to spend a weekend with friends.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: And probably not like other narratives of illness you may have read before – I’d say the aforementioned triumvirate this work has been a part of in my mind is relatively unique in many ways and I’ve actually read quite a few narratives of illness – I did an independent study on illness and life writing in college and basically read everything I could get my hands on, which amounted to like 80 autobiographies plus various critical works.

By Melanie Walsh Even those pieces devoted to the Yugoslav conflict are exasperating. Not long after that he was boasting about the monster injections lumbar punctures he had been given. Both make the reader a little uncomfortable, but just to the level necessary to make the reader pursue the story and want to understand, rather than cruelly judge, them.