I took the morning TGV from Poitiers to Paris on January 15th to ask Etel Adnan a question. She was about to receive France’s highest cultural honor, the Ordre de Chevalier des Arts et des Lettres. Her collected writings are imminent with Nightboat Books, and she has been the late star of Kassel.
“I think that ‘consciousness’ is thinner than we like to believe.”
“But here is what is most important to me—throwing myself into the present, the unanswerable, the unknown, the unquantifiable.”
Tillman’s latest novel, American Genius, A Comedy, uses skin, that “illusory border between the body and the world,” as a fulcrum from which to explore an encyclopedic array of American subjects.