The Dodo: “… An early example of humanity’s ability to sabotage the natural world.”

The quote in the title above is taken from a tiny, pretty book of memoir, illustrations, and fascinating footnotes on objects, animals, and people. My thanks to Brandi Wells, Managing Editor, Black Warrior Review, for publishing my response to Stephanie LaCava’s intriguing memoir An Extraordinary Theory of Objects:


“What is most exceptional about Stephanie LaCava’s memoir The Extraordinary Theory of Objects is that it contains little of Stephanie LaCava. Through story, footnotes, and illustrations by Matthew Nelson, the book chronicles a wide range of people and, most brilliantly, objects. In the first sentence of her introduction, LaCava declares, “I was always strange.” What follows in this brief but gripping memoir is the chronicling of her desire, separateness, depression, loneliness, and her inability to feel settled in the world and within herself. Since childhood, LaCava sought out stories and objects both ordinary and extraordinary. Her imagination and sense of awe distanced her from reality and freed her from everyday drudgery: “Some people’s bodies need to make extra blood cells or insulin for survival; mine manufactured fantasy.” This relentless curiosity and attachment to things is a capacity she both cherishes and at times laments, recognizing that in childhood she coveted unusual things to distract herself from her unraveling.”


You can read the rest here.

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