The Art of Fiction (Paperback)

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An investigation, performed through storytelling, of the constructed beliefs of society and individuals

In this his eighth collection of poetry (and fifth with Four Way Books), Prufer’s career-spanning talent for estranging the familiar—and also for recording the unthinkable with eerie directness—recurs, enhanced and transformed by the collection’s meta-level attention to the role of fiction in our civic lives. Prufer describes, often through personae, a near future, tracing there the political gambit of Fake News and the role of the imagination in our self-understanding (whether it’s cogent or delusional). Via both satire and direct address (to the point of reader-squeamishness), Prufer aims to understand the ugly-casual atmosphere of our often racialized, pervasive distrust. The Art of Fiction fundamentally understands that fictions are deployed to divide us, and they work: they get under our skin. Prufer powerfully explores the roles of imagination and art in how we explain ourselves to ourselves.

About the Author

Kevin Prufer was born in Cleveland, OH, and attended Wesleyan University, The Hollins Writing Program, and Washington University. He is the author of seven poetry collections, including the Four Way Books titles How He Loved Them (2018); Churches (2014), named one of the ten best poetry books of the year by The New York Times Book Review; In a Beautiful Country (2011), a Rilke Prize and Poets’ Prize finalist; and National Anthem (2008), named one of the five best poetry books of the year by Publishers Weekly and a finalist for the Poets’ Prize. Prufer is the recipient of many awards, including four Pushcart prizes, several awards from the Poetry Society of America, fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts and the Lannan Foundation, and several Best American Poetry selections. He is a professor of English and Creative Writing at the University of Houston.

Praise For…

Praise for Kevin Prufer:

“A gothic extravaganza featuring alligators, avalanches and medical devices left inside bodies, delivered largely in long, musical free verse lines. Poetry at full boil, poured with deliberate abandon.”
—David Orr, The New York Times

"Poet's Prize finalist Kevin Prufer...imparts an understanding of how we deploy narratives, particularly in the political arena, whose fake-news stratagems can be deftly undone by the pure passion of verse...." – Barbara Hoffert, Library Journal
— Barbara Hoffert

Featured in Library Journal‘s “Books and Authors To Know: Poetry Titles To Watch 2021”
— Barbara Hoffert
Product Details
ISBN: 9781945588723
ISBN-10: 1945588721
Publisher: Four Way Books
Publication Date: February 15th, 2021
Pages: 132
Language: English