Kasia Boddy

Kasia Boddy is a lecturer in American Literature at the University of Cambridge. She is the author of Boxing: A Cultural History (2008), The American Short Story Since 1950 (2010) and Geranium (2013), as well as numerous essays on American fiction.  

Lynne Tillman and the Great American Novel

2011-07-24

Most recent “Great American Novels” are not great, but merely big. Lynne Tillman’s American Genius, A Comedy, by contrast, is designed with scale, not size, in mind. So argues Kasia Boddy, who reads the novel as a critical engagement with book reviewers’ favorite cliché for ambitious social fiction. Instead of resisting cultural obsolescence through sheer assertion, Tillman’s book examines how the cracks and contradictions of American ideology have imprinted themselves on the individual body, bearer of the national disease: sensitivity.