Imagine if the kind of documentary films that avow a complex relationship to the truth were fact-checked. Imagine if F For Fake or My Winnipeg had to square the poetic truth they achieve with factual accuracy, with pop-up bubbles noting any potential inexactitudes or disputes. Show More Summary
Apropos l'affaire D'Agata, I came across this amusing and illuminating bit in John McPhee's paean to fact checkers, Checkpoints, collected in the superb Silk Parachutes (FSG 2010): In "The Third Man," in the immortal Ferris-wheel scene high above postwar Vienna,...
Esi Edugyan’s Half-Blood Blues, shortlisted for the Booker Prize, is now out in the U.S. Also new this week are John D’Agata’s much-discussed Lifespan of a Fact, Sarah Manguso’s The Guardians, Ellen Ullman’s By Blood and The Boiling Season by Christopher Herbert, who has an essay up on our site today. The new memoir by [...]
J.C. Hallman, whom it seems has just finished writing an awesome book on the Brothers James, turns up a great quote that touches on the whole John D’Agata “I don’t need no stinking facts” thing. This, I think, gets at why we’re still...Show More Summary
I’m reading this New York Times review of The Lifespan of a Fact, an unusual book by John D’Agata and Jim Fingal. On each page of the book is a paragraph of an essay D’Agata wrote about the suicide of a Las Vegas teenager; surrounding the paragraph are the queries about the piece by Fingal, [...]
In this week's NYT book review section, Jennifer B. McDonald offer a fascinating and well-crafted review of what sounds like an interesting book ("In the Details: ‘The Lifespan of a Fact,’ by John D’Agata and Jim Fingal"): Under consideration in this essay is “The Lifespan of a Fact,” which is less a book than a knock-down, drag-out [...]
Jennifer B. McDonald talks about "The Lifespan of a Fact," in which the essayist John D'Agata wrestles with a fact checker over questions of truth, beauty and accuracy.
I’ve spent plenty of time and energy here already praising The Lifespan of a Fact, the strange and mesmerizing book by John D’Agata and Jim Fingal, and tempting as it is to keep shouting about the thing, I’ll back off… Continue reading ?
Once I discovered John D’Agata’s new book, The Lifespan of a Fact, I had high hopes that he would recant, or at least evolve, his views on fact and fiction and their place in literary essays. I can’t imagine that, given his blithe disregard for facts, D’Agata would have gotten nearly the regard he has so far if not for his clear gifts with prose. Show More Summary
An adaptation from ''The Lifespan of a Fact,'' a book by John D'Agata, a professor of nonfiction at the University of Iowa, and Jim Fingal, a former fact-checker, that deals with the practice of fudging facts in the name of Art.
What we can learn from the nasty fight between John D’Agata and his zealous researcher.
The publication of The Lifespan of a Fact, which is based on seven years of email exchanges between writer John D'Agata and fact-checker Jim Fingal, has prompted a lot of thoughtful discussion (an excerpt from the book ran in this month's Harper's). Show More Summary
I’ll admit at the outset to some frustration. I like John D’Agata’s work quite a lot. I liked Halls of Fame, I really liked About a Mountain, I think the two anthologies he’s edited are among the most crucial +… Continue reading ?
Earlier this week, while there were some interesting—and interestingly broad—reactions to the excerpts from the forthcoming/arriving book The Lifespan of a Fact by John D’Agata and Jim Fingal printed in Harper’s (see here and here by KR Writer’s Workshop’s own… Continue reading ?
Which are more important: true words, or beautiful words? “The Lifespan of a Fact,” a book by John D’Agata, a writer, and Jim Fingal, a former intern and fact-checker at The Believer, purports to explore this question by documentingShow More Summary
This month, Harper’s Magazine excerpted a portion of The Lifespan of a Fact, a book reproducing email debates between John D’Agata and Believer fact-checker Jim Fingal. As Fingal struggled to fact-check D’Agata’s “What Happens There” essay for The Believer, the author made passionate arguments about the nature of facts in essays. Show More Summary
Harper’s serializes a little of John D’Agata’s latest book, Lifespan of a Fact. Though I had some serious reservations about D’Agata’s previous, About a Mountain, that book was nonetheless one of the freshest, most interesting things I’d read in a while, back then I read it. Show More Summary
I often worry about over-hyping books. Nothing ruins a good novel or collection of stories quite as well as a glowing review. So when Nick Flynn calls John D’Agata’s latest book of creative nonfiction, About A Mountain, “utterly amazing” and Ben Marcus raves, “Here is the literary essay raised to the highest form of art,” [...]
Two pieces of mine both went online elsewhere: My review/essay of Cesar Aira’s The Literary Conference at Abu Dhabi’s English-language newspaper The National And about 6,000 words of mine on John D’Agata, centered around his About a Mountain, which I have deeply mixed feelings about