The Lazarus Project creates a heavy, heartfelt wholeness
out of three different kinds of loss. First there is Vladimir Brik, a young
Bosnian-American whose only apparent difference from the author is his name (see
sidebar). He has lost his homeland, a loss made sharper by his guilt at having
escaped the ravages of war. In America, his new home, he feels forever tentative
and dissociated. "The one thing I remembered and missed from the before-the-war
Sarajevo," he says, "was a kind of unspoken belief that everyone could be
whatever they claimed they wereeach life, however imaginary, could be validated
by its rightful, sovereign owner, from the inside."
He becomes almost morbidly fascinated by the true story of Lazarus Averbach, a Jewish man who escaped the pogroms of Eastern Europe only to be shot dead by the Chief of Police, mistaken for an anarchist a mere ...
*The term 'metafiction' was coined by William H Gass in a 1970 essay entitled "Philosophy and the Form of Fiction", in which he pointed out that a new term was needed to describe the emerging genre of fiction that broke with the then dominant conventions of novel writing by explicitly drawing attention to its status as an artifact in order to pose questions about the relationship between fiction and reality. Just as presentational theater never lets the audience forget they are viewing a play, metafiction continually reminds the reader that he or she is reading a fictional work.
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