A Short Inquiry into the End of the World: A Mister Investigator Mystery cover - click to view full size
Formats :

A Short Inquiry into the End of the World: A Mister Investigator Mystery

In David Stromberg’s newest work, Mister Investigator takes on the end of the wor;d—or rather, this fraught and dangerous moment that we find ourselves in, and what it says about our future. This particular moment, a crisis that feels unique and strange, is actually connected—as Mister Investigator discovers—to multiple precedents. To this end, Stromberg’s analysis is first and foremost a reading: of the thinkers, poets, artists, philosophers, and politicians, who have in the past reacted to the unthinkable. He is most committed to those thinkers who managed to hold their despair close to home, or “not to lose it”—a phrase allegedly uttered to Anna Akhmatova by her then husband, the art historian Nikolai Punin. In Mister Investigator’s case, it is the likes of W. H. Auden, who chose to look at the fateful events of 1939 with full awareness, or the painter Mark Rothko, whose “recipe for art” includes a willing engagement with death, irony, and tension in order to create a new understanding of this moment. Mister Investigator has the courage to study the raw texture of the present moment. He knows no comfort and no consolation, and he invites real effort at cognition. Stromberg’s ability and desire to look closely at events that evoke horror is what makes his text so attractive—and more to the point, so necessary today. DAVID STROMBERG is a writer, translator, and literary scholar. He has published fiction in The Woven Tale Press, Atticus Review, and the UK’s Ambit, nonfiction in The American Scholar, Literary Matters, and the Los Angeles Review of Books, and translations in The New Yorker, Asymptote, and Conjunctions. In 2019, he published a series of personal reflections in Public Seminar about growing up on the ethnic and cultural margins of Los Angeles. He is the author of four cartoon collections, including Baddies (Melville House), and two critical studies, most recently Idiot Love and the Elements of Intimacy (Palgrave). He acts as editor to the Isaac Bashevis Singer Literary Trust and his edited collection of Singer’s essays is forthcoming from Princeton University Press.

Leave a Reply

Comment moderation is in use.
Please feel free to use this form to contact us directly, and we'll reply by email. Thank you!

 | Subscribe to comments via RSS