Tao Lin writes from moods that less radical writers would let pass—from laziness, from vacancy, from boredom. And it turns out that his report. This novel is called EEEEE EEE EEEE, which is a sound dolphins make. If you’ve read Tao Lin before, via his poetry collection (you are a little bit happier than i. Tao Lin, Author Melville House Publishing $ (p) ISBN and surreal touches: bears, dolphins (who say “”Eeeee Eee Eeee”” to express emotion, in spite.
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Each posed a different set of issues, which allowed us to discuss literature as contagion, as colonization, as assault, as enchantment, and as sedation. Eeeee Eee Eeee is an extremely smart, extremely provocative, and ultimately indispensable work of contemporary American literature.
But it is also a problematic text in terms of both its form and content, and its relationship to, as well as its representation of, race and gender. This is what we hope to uncover. In terms of the experimental literature aspect of the course, we will investigate the aesthetics, focusing on structure and character as illustrations of what I will call a literature of sedation.
The text mumbles, blimps, and shuffles. The hallucinatory mingles with the imaginary to numb and destabilize the sense of reality conjured by the text. Memory recurs and fades away without ever establishing a firm grip. Consistency perpetually comes under suspicion, to the point where contingency threatens to overtake the narrative. Compare this book with the other course texts in order to situate it in our ongoing conversation. Do authors have obligations to their race or gender? Do authors have obligations to other races or genders?
Discuss how absence works to reinforce presence. Idea of the text both creating and being created by absence. What discursive fields does Eeeee Eee Eeee imbricate?
Modernism, Surrealism, Realism, the Absurd, …? Usher conversations away from symbolism. A dolphin is a dolphin, a bear is a bear. Return to our discussion of surface and depth. Ontologicalwhere does Eeeee Eee Eeee situate itself? The first pages focus on a character named Andrew, but then the narrative diverges: However, this schema flexes. For instance, around page 80 the narrator leaves Andrew behind to follow a iln to Los Angeles to kill Elijah Wood, and toward the end of the book the narrative is hijacked by a pontificating president.
Aside from these narrative focal divisions, there are at least two other strategic structural eeew being ees. First, the order of information.
From the start to the finish, Eeeee Eee Eeee loops and jags and presents information non-chronologically and non-sequentially. Sarah has a secret pass code. How sad, one reader might think, that this young man seems so smitten with someone he barely knows.
Had we known from the start that Andrew and Sarah knew each other only passingly, our reception of eeee obsession would be calculated differently, and our judgement of the character would most likely be more cynical, I would suspect.
Tao Lin – Wikipedia
Second, the denial of escalation. The text convulses along a flatline, moves in time but never intensifies, ignores causality, instantiates a counter discourse to standard teleological assumptions: A work of art. A counter to life, not a representation of it. Comparing the frequency of this phrase to the infrequency of characters acting, making choices, or even doing anything creates an interesting paradox: Perhaps they seek the most intensely imaginable action in order to counter their utterly mundane existence?
But when Andrew or one of the other characters says it or thinks it, the likelihood of them really going to do it seems minimal.
Andrew is trite and cliched.
He has nothing to say to anyone. No one has anything to say to anyone, for some reason. Consider this as the battle-cry of Eeeee Eee Eeee. The implication being that Shawn is not a member of the tribe and should therefore be ostracized. They all speak the same way and have the same thoughts. They are all depressed and sad and angsty.
Look at the exchange between Ellen and her mother pgs. In other words, the goal of the text is to avoid differentiating characters, to instead conflate and compress characters, to intensify unity to the point ees all is one and the same.
While this is one of the interesting aspects of the text, it causes a problem for readers looking to examine the role of race and gender. Again, this is not meant pejoratively, but should be conveyed as:.
Earlier this year, Lin wrote an article on the future of the novel for The New York Observer where tak elaborated his ideas relating to the division between noumenon and phenomenon and how this relates to literature. We must gao careful then with all of those pop cultural references because they are deceiving us: What the book wants us to consider instead are philosophical questions that exist outside the realm of politics: Why do we die?
Where do ljn go when we die? Where did consciousness come from? Could bring Beckett into the conversation, could show clips from Happy Days. Most of those who are making use of this word would be highly confused if required to explain its meaning.
It would appear that, for the lack of any novel doctrine such as that of surrealism, all those who are eager to join in the latest scandal or movement now seize upon this philosophy in which, however, they can find nothing to their purpose. For in truth this is of all teachings the least scandalous and the most austere: Seems relevant, but could potentially put us on a slippery slope into an outer atmosphere conversation. In an interview at Brightest Young Things from earlier this year, Lin was asked about his position on race:.
One subject you do not talk about in your writing that I have ever seen is being Asian, or I guess the Asian American Experience.
eewee Are identity politics just totally beside the point? It seems like most people will agree that they would like if they were treated by other people based on what they have concretely done in their life, not what other people have done, with their lives.
Eeeee Eee Eeee
In Vice last year Lin said:. Things that, if solved, will leave you with these other problems: Which are the things that I like to read about.
The jail scene in Shoplifting From American Apparel is one of the only moments in your work where the ethnicity of characters is prominently noted.
Would you say your characters live in a post-racial world? Or those other things mentioned earlier. Return to our discussion of privilege. He acknowledges that some people struggle with poverty and racism, but seems to imply that these issues can be suspended under certain circumstances.
Is wee even possible? Can such a text exist as an unfettered product of the imagination devoid of the reciprocal relationship between noumenon and phenomenon — if so, how; if no, why?
How does Eeeee Eee Eeee attempt to negotiate these questions? Eeeee Eee Eeee movie trailer lim Book Notes Largehearted Boy.