Reading Confessions of a Crap Artist
Date: 7/1/2012 3:03:00 PM
Philip K Dick maybe best known for his SiFi works, but the best example of his genius is his non-SiFi novel Confessions of a Crap Artist. This may not be based in futuristic worlds he created for his most famous novels, but it explores some of the same themes – and in a realistic 1950s America.
The staple ideas of the genre that was the authors bread-and-butter are all mentioned – but they are only beliefs of an “insane” mind. The novel explores the question about who is sane, and the characters the author creates would be very familiar to the fans of his SiFi novels.
Dick's prose, as always, is clumsy – creating a distance from the reader. This style of his has been problematic for many critics, the only reason they do not want to put him on the same pedestal as, say, Hemingway – works brilliantly for this work. The themes of alienation and misunderstanding are portrayed with a frightening clarity.
A great read, proof that marginalization of genre fiction by so-called mainstream critics is unfortunate, and wrong.