Short Fuse Podcast #64: Literary Criticism — Magnitude of Thought

By Elizabeth Howard



Episode Summary

In this episode of The Short Fuse, Elizabeth Howard talks to Ann Kjellberg about reading and the importance of literary criticism and commentary. Ann is the founder of Book Post, a newsletter-based book review that publishes short book reviews by distinguished figures in literature, history, science, social sciences, and the arts.  According to  Kjellberg,  “the importance of literary criticism is to have magnitude of thought, sustained reflection, and a kind of demonstrable argument. This is why I’m interested in book reviews, because commentary is a way of connecting written culture with something that is enduring.”

Episode Notes

Editor and critics Ann Kjellberg

Ann Kjellberg founded Book Post, a newsletter-based book review, in 2018. Book Post publishes short book reviews by distinguished figures in literature, history, science, social sciences, and the arts. In the newsletter, Kjellberg also reports on the book industry, journalism, and the state of writing and ideas. Her essays have appeared in The New York Review of BooksThe ObserverThe Browser, and LitHub. She was on the editorial staff of the New York Review of Books from 1988 to 2017, and from 1985 to 1987 she was an editor at Farrar, Straus & Giroux. She is the literary executor of the poet Joseph Brodsky and editor of several editions of his work. She  founded the literary magazine Little Star and has taught literary journalism at Bryn Mawr College.

The Short Fuse Podcast is hosted and produced by Elizabeth Howard. Learn more at Elizabeth Howard.

The Short Fuse is distributed through The Arts Fuse, an online journal of arts criticism and commentary.

The Arts Fuse was established in June 2007 as a curated, independent online arts magazine dedicated to publishing in-depth criticism, along with high quality previews, interviews, and commentaries. The publication’s over 60 freelance critics (many of them with decades of experience) cover dance, film, food, literature, music, television, theater, video games, and visual arts. Our core belief: that there is a robust readership for arts coverage that believes that culture matters.

Alex Waters is the technical producer, audio editor, and engineer for The Short Fuse Podcast. He is a music producer and a student at Berklee College of Music. He has written and produced music and edited for podcasts including The Faith, Chai Podcast, and Con Confianza. He writes, produces, and records music for independent artists, including The Living. He lives in Brooklyn and can be reached at with inquiries.

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