DC’s Literary History

This week Salon pays a visit to DC in their “Literary Guide to the World” column.

As you’d expect, the list is long on stories of politicians with a not-so-tragic flaws (money, power, sex) and short on stories of people who call DC a home and not a means to an end. That’s why I’m intrigued by Edward P. Jones’ upcoming book All Aunt Hagar’s Children: Stories.

From Publisher’s Review:

[…] As in his previous collection of short fiction, Lost in the City (1992), Jones centers his storytelling on his native Washington, D.C. Here, though, Jones broadens his chronological scope to encompass virtually the entire 20th century and a wide range of experiences and African-American perspectives, from a man who has kept the secret of his adultery for 45 years, to another whose most difficult task on leaving prison for murder is having dinner with his brother’s family. Often, Jones presents characters who have been away from the South long enough to mourn the loss of values and connections they traded for the too-often failed promise of urban success, but he also portrays the nation’s capital as a place of potential redemption, where small curses and small miracles intertwine, and where shifting communities and connections can literally save one’s life.

Has Jones written a Dubliners or Ulysses for DC? We’ll find out when the book comes out in September.

1 Comment so far

  1. Robin (unregistered) on August 21st, 2006 @ 1:53 pm

    There was a short story by Jones in the New Yorker a couple weeks ago, which I assume was drawn from this forthcoming book. It was a good story and a great slice of life from the DC most of us don’t see.

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