Literature Not On Web

The world — and the world of thought — is Googleable.  If you’re reading this website then you’re already unconsciously aware of the [not always so] obvious: the Internet is an Extension of your Mind.

It’s footnotes, annotations, and endnotes to all you read and consume.  And yet when it comes to literature it’s really, well, kinda stupid.  If I want to look up arguments and comparisons of every type of Beatles bootleg known to man?  Easily findable.  But if I want a considered comparison between the Moncrieff Proust and the Pendergrast Penguin Proust?  The Internet has no idea what I’m talking about.  Other recent searches that proved in vain: I wanted a list of all translated articles and short stories — in magazines — by Bolano.  Nope, not on the Net.  How about a complete checklist of all magazine work by the prolific William T. Vollmann?  No sir, not here, try the library.  Finally I wanted a definitive answer, which is better and more informative (and accurate): the trusty Arden Shakespeare (once approved by Harold Bloom) or the new Yale Annotated Shakespeare (with afterwords by Harold Bloom)?  Query not found.

Want a list of every Earth in the Multiverse?  Or every member of the Legion of Superheroes?  Or every extant appearance of Streaky the Supercat going back to the 1960’s?  The Internet has it.  But the “fan pages” of pretty much any author you think matters absolutely SUCK and look like they were designed in 1999 because, well, they were.

Anyhow, since you, the reader, are on the Internet, you are therefore the Internet, so if you have any answers to the above questions, please let me know in the comments section located below this post.  



2 thoughts on “Literature Not On Web

  1. The internet remains, sadly, mute.

    Except: The Moncrieff Proust is pretty in a way it shouldn’t be and makes Proust’s writing seem poncy–he hated the text he was translating and tried to rehabilitate it in the lyric Victorian manner.

    Makes for a beautiful read, but seriously, even when the U.S. translations run out, special-order the Penguin set from the UK.


    • The fact that Penguin couldn’t figure out a way to get the money or resources or whatever — that the literary American scene didn’t RALLY TOGETHER to find a way to have those volumes completed here in the United States is…

      Well ok sure it’s in support of a poncy and quite dead French dandy.

      Still. America I’m talking to you. American college students, put down your Facebook and freak out about a real book. Organize. Protest. Get us our Proust back.

      Thank you,

      Fort Saint (Loop) Davids

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