About the Cover
Our cover design by Nanette Black features an image from a series of photographs by Gregory Spaid on rural America soon to be published by Safe Harbor Books under the title Grace, with an essay by Wendell Berry.The photograph on our cover was made in 1997 at the Harrison Grange in Knox County, Ohio. Spaid’s work is in the permanent collections of such public and private institutions as the Museum of Modern Art, the Smithsonian, and the Chase Manhattan Bank. Spaid, a professor of art at Kenyon College, received a Fulbright research fellowship to Italy and numerous fellowships from the Ohio Arts Council.
The Spring 2001 edition of The Kenyon Review will, I’m delighted to announce, be produced in collaboration with the Nobel Museum in Stockholm and with Stand, the most influential literary magazine in England. In celebration of the one-hundredth anniversary of the Nobel Prizes, the issue will contain new work by living laureates as well as interviews and special articles about their work. It will represent a conversation about the nature of creativity in the different fields that receive Nobel Prizes, from literature to the sciences and even to the hugely varied and often dangerous pursuits of peace around the world.
You’ll note that I hesitate to name names. In these early, rather frenzied days of planning and soliciting contributors for such an ambitious collection, we face an embarrassment of riches and a careful diplomatic dance. Whom should we invite to contribute? Far more difficult—whom should we not? Even with a significantly increased number of pages, not all living Nobel laureates can be featured. Such a vexing problem! Stay tuned—in my notes for the Winter 2001 issue, I should be able to fill you in.
A major exhibition mounted by the Nobel Museum to mark the centenary of the Nobel Prizes will also debut next March. Its tour of the globe, including Japan and Australia, will last four years, and with it will travel the Spring 2001 issue of KR.
The prospect, the challenge before us is, of course, both exhilarating and a bit daunting. It will be a signal moment for The Kenyon Review: not simply another issue of this magazine but a literary event of wide resonance.
In the issue you now hold is a stunning, challenging, rather disorienting essay on the nature of time and our human place in it, out of it, watching it, as defined by it, and our striving to manipulate it through art. “Broken Dates: Fiction and the Century” by Michael Wood is based on a talk he gave at the National Arts Club in New York on October 12, 1999, to mark the sixtieth anniversary of The Kenyon Review. The sense of celebration, of intellectual excitement among a large crowd that evening in Gramercy Park, suggested the larger national community of readers and writers whom we serve and strive to please. Such is both our joy and responsibility.
—David H. Lynn