M E E T T H E AU T H O R William Giraldi ven Birkerts was initially hesitant when I approached him with the possibility of conducting this interview. He didn't want to be on the volleying end of twenty questions about his hometown, his childhood or whether he writes in pen or pencil. Rather, he would consent only if the two of us entered into a conversation, a dialogue, about literature and its place in a world that wants to leave it behind. This struck me as a good idea, and what I found during the course of our conversation is that Birkerts is full of good ideas. Our discussion began in the offices of AGNI, at Boston University, and continued on the telephone and by e-mail. Writers and thinkers can be an ornery lot, and I wish for the sake of drama that I could say Birkerts and I bumped heads over an issue or two, but we did not. He was never less than gracious, even when my youthful exuberance threatened to take our dialogue in a dozen wrong directions. Although we part ways when it comes to the value of certain American novelists,
The Missouri Review – University of Missouri
Published: Sep 11, 2006
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