Tuesday, July 24, 2007

New Yorker: The Felsenfeld Movement

Close Reading Dept.: Namesake: The Talk of the Town: The New Yorker: "The Felsenfeld Movement was well under way when Michael Chabon arrived at the MacDowell Colony, in New Hampshire, to work on a novel, in February of 2004. By that time, four novelists at the colony had already created fictional characters called Felsenfeld, named after a quirky and charismatic classical composer from Brooklyn who was also in residence. Eventually, there would be a grand total of seven Felsenfelds: three in books that have been published in the United States since 2006, one in an Austrian best-seller, and three in works that are still in progress.

“It just immediately sounded like a name that I already would have been using,” Chabon said recently. “It’s not only an intrinsically interesting name but it seemed it would fit perfectly with the book I was writing, which was ‘The Yiddish Policemen’s Union.’ I was so happy to have the name, because it had the sound of a likely Jewish surname but was not overly familiar.”"


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