Monday, May 10, 2010

A snippet

from The Possessed, about a recurring nightmare that began to plague Elif Batuman during a stressful homestay in Samarkand:
I had applied for a grant to go to Russia on a homestay, and the household I got assigned to was a family of penguins in Antarctica. "But penguins don't even have a language!" I protested. In fact, those penguins did have a language, with two branches, one epic-narrative and one lyric-folkloric. I was jerked awake by the pounding of my own heart.

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