Vertigopedia, Hanif Kureishi, and Flannery O’Connor

Bully was at BEA, and took this picture of a spread from the Vertigopedia. Newsarama‘s blog noted it, and also pointed to Brian Wood, of (among other things) DMZ and Northlanders fame, saying nice things about the book.

And in another note: Hey, Hanif Kureishi, in this article you really come across like an asshole. And I say that as someone who loved The Buddha of Suburbia.

One of the things you notice is that when you switch on the television and a student has gone mad with a machine gun on a campus in America, it’s always a writing student.

Wha? Exactly how often have students gone mad with machine guns on campuses? And why on earth would someone who purports to value teaching take a dump all over his students this way? One cannot help but be reminded of Flannery O’Connor’s much cleverer take on the role of creative writing classes. “Everywhere I go,” she said, “I’m asked if the universities stifle writers. My opinion is that they don’t stifle enough of them.”

3 responses to “Vertigopedia, Hanif Kureishi, and Flannery O’Connor”

  1. Kureishi’s statement is stupid and misinformed on several levels. Not one school shooting that I can recall involved machine guns. Neither did the shooters go nuts because they were writers. What about all the many many MFA candidates in the US and around the world who manage not to go nuts and start killing the faculty and students on their campuses?There are an incredible number of variables in these tragedies that Kureishi just dismisses by omission, such as mental health, or family issues, or the easy access to weapons in places like Virginia and Colorado.I myself am a writer who has in the past written fiction of a violent nature (although I write much less of it now), but I also lost one of my best friends last year in the Virginia Tech massacre. What would Kureishi make of me?


  2. Alex, I’d argue with your point (and Mr. Lundberg’s), but I’m afraid you’d snap and come after me with an gun, machine or otherwise.


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