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Alt Lit has strangled itself, I guess

The story of Alt Lit is the story of a literary community that was evolving in real time online. Like indie rock, properly defining “Alt Lit” is difficult, as the term’s true meaning kept changing as new writers appeared within the community, or as its contributors grew older, matured artistically and signed publishing deals with small or medium-sized presses. This is why, in appearance, the work of a writer like Ben Brooks bears little resemblance to the work of a writer like Marie Calloway, yet both have been described as “Alt Lit.” Though it was sometimes described as a “movement,” like Beat Poetry, Alt Lit was always more of a community to me, a volatile, shape-shifting organism whose trajectory seemed impossible to predict.

Alt Lit: A Eulogy
by Guillaume Morissette
published through maisonneuve


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