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Review RevUU Autumn 2020

How to Distinguish Rape From Romance

A review of Kate Elizabeth Russell’s My Dark Vanessa By Bou Laam Wong If someone were to ask me how I’d describe Vladimir Nabokov’s controversial novel Lolita, I would say it’s another example of a tragic tale about a young girl’s loss of innocence told through the voice of her rapist. There are plenty of […]

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Review RevUU Autumn 2020

Breasts and Eggs, Pen and Paper

A review of Mieko Kawakami’s Breasts and Eggs By Elena Schnee I am a woman, I am a mother, I am a writer  Have you ever heard of a woman giving birth to a book? No? But what is actually the difference between creating new life and creating a new work of art? How are […]

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Essay RevUU Autumn 2020

The Privilege of White Authors

My Dark Vanessa and Excavation: Who Can Write (White) What? By Ariane Dijckmeester In the first half of 2020, Kate Elizabeth Russell made a splash in the literary scene, before her debut novel My Dark Vanessa had even been released. Russell’s novel, which depicts the disturbing and deeply psychological romance between a student and a […]

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Essay RevUU Autumn 2020

In Defence of Cancel Culture

The War on Free Speech By Mayke Keller Cancel culture has become the norm of the literary world. Anonymous social media users, Twitter mobs, and Goodread bloggers have taken upon themselves the authority to cancel everyone and everything they deem as problematic. With success. Books get pulled, works get burned, authors get bullied into leaving […]

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Review RevUU Autumn 2020

“No Right”

A review of Douglas Stuart’s Shuggie Bain By Ella van Driel “The day was flat.” – Douglas Stuart This is the first sentence that greets you in Douglas Stuart’s first novel Shuggie Bain. The novel starts with “Shuggie” Bain living alone in a dingy bedsit in Glasgow in 1992. Sweet and short, this first sentence feels […]

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Essay RevUU Autumn 2020

Is Our Poetic Soul Safe?

By Runcong Liu Whether or not you keep abreast of recent developments in artificial intelligence, you have probably come across news about Generative Pre-trained Transformer 3 (commonly known as GPT-3), a language model released by the AI laboratory OpenAI this summer. “Feed me a prompt, I will repay you whatever you want.” If GPT-3 can speak, that is probably how it will […]

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Review RevUU Autumn 2020

A Dazzling Debut of Literary Inclusivity

A review of R.B. Lemberg’s The Four Profound Weaves By Kris van der Voorn Don’t worry about transphobic, sexist, or racist writers anymore: the new generation is here, and they are taking down every notion we have of privileged hierarchies. A breath of fresh air is blowing through the literary scene, and amidst it is […]

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Essay RevUU Autumn 2020

J.K. Rowling Has Gone and ‘Expelliarmussed’ Herself

By Annick Smithers A question that many a Harry Potter fan has asked themselves this year is: what should I do with all my favourite books? J.K. Rowling has come under fire for expressing her transphobic opinions on Twitter, and many fans are now turning their backs on the author who has previously meant so […]

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Review RevUU Autumn 2020

Pop Culture, the Bush Era, and Aliens

A Fun but Flawed Love Letter to the 2000s By Leda Serikoglu In her debut novel Axiom’s End, the first in a five-book series, Lindsay Ellis rewinds the clock to an alternative autumn of 2007: George W. Bush is still the President of the United States; the Iraq War still hammers on; but now the […]

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Review RevUU Autumn 2020

Covid-1918

A review of Emma Donoghue’s The Pull of the Stars  By Renske Rademaker Emma Donoghue’s The Pull of the Stars takes place during a pandemic, but it is not the pandemic one might expect from a novel published in 2020. The novel depicts three days in the life of Dublin nurse Julia Power amidst the […]