“Xiaolu Guo warns that English-language mainstream has warped a broader ‘reading habit’, on panel with Jhumpa Lahiri and Jonathan Franzen”
(From The Guardian, January 20, 2014)
Some of the points brought up in the article are interesting, and I think fair ones. The comment about American culture being so pervasive throughout the world, so much to push out local cultures or affect interest in them, is definitely something to be concerned about. Not only in literature, but other forms of entertainment, as well as food, culture, and so on.
And there’s definitely plenty of overrated American literature out there, often written in a very formulaic or boring way. I would love to see more emphasis on supporting and translating works from other countries, but given the current culture here, I don’t know if it’ll happen. Considering that they will subtitle some British TV shows when airing them in the US, that tells you plenty.
What do you think?