“In the Hour of Chaos”: I review Charles Johnson’s short stories

at AmCon:

Somebody–I hope a commenter will remind me who it was–has suggested that the Left typically thinks in terms of an opposition between oppression and liberation, whereas the right typically thinks in terms of an opposition between civilization and barbarism. I would reframe the latter opposition as order vs. chaos; if we do that, it’s obvious that both oppositions are unrelentingly relevant, yet few thinkers or artists are able to hold both conflicts before our eyes at once.

I just finished Charles Johnson’s 1986 short-story collection The Sorcerer’s Apprentice: Tales and Conjurations, a bag of broken glass which is equal parts liberationist and reactionary, yearning for freedom and knuckling under to fatalism. Centering on black American lives, mostly set within black communities, his stories shouldn’t be missed—he’s an intensely intellectual visionary, a reader of Plato who remembers that the heart of Plato is in the Symposium, a black Buddhist for whom education is not so much self-improvement as self-abnegation.

more

Like Patheos Catholic on Facebook!

Patheos Catholic LogoCLICK HERE TO "LIKE" PATHEOS CATHOLIC ON FACEBOOK

Reading, 'Riting and Repentance: Some Notes from the Festival of Faith and Writing
"Every Last One Was a Mother to Me": Four DC Women Live a Century of Friendship
"Monks and At-Risk Teens Run School Together": HuffPo
"Art Matters, Even When You're Poor": Alison Stine
About Eve Tushnet

CLOSE | X

HIDE | X