An Enemy Of False Images

British author Zadie Smith just seems to view herself as...herself. Is she onto something?


British author Zadie Smith is a fascinating writer with a fascinating outlook on life. In an age where the term multiculturalism sends most literary scholars' hearts aflutter, this child of a Jamaican father and an English mother doesn't quite see what the big deal is. Sure, she argues, people can come from different backgrounds (they certainly do in her fiction), but does that warrant a full-fledged ideology?

What's more, the polished Smith writes in a way that, although certainly challenging and contemporary, is also reminiscent of some very old school masters (her style reminds me a bit of Fitzgerald's) While it would be easy to say the author represents some kind of huge paradox, Smith just seems to view herself as...herself.

For example, Smith has stated that at one time she wanted to write like Franz Kafka. Yet, despite her determination, she found she simply wasn't built to compose fiction the way that Kafka did. Her talents, she realized, were leading her in a different direction.

Maybe that's why Smith's works, such as the popular White Teeth, resonate so well with readers. Smith understands that what's important is who and what we, as individuals, are – not what our faulty desires or false images may be.

It's a lesson we should all carry with us in our everyday lives. 

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

Cathy Vellucci July 11, 2012 at 11:17 AM
So very true!
Angus July 11, 2012 at 09:48 PM
So. Ice to have some talk about books on here, so much better than the divisive political posts. Thanks. Great writer, btw. I loved "On Beauty" and "White Teeth."
Angus July 11, 2012 at 09:49 PM
Meant to say "nice" up there, not ice.
Maria Giannuzzi July 12, 2012 at 06:47 PM
I am not familiar with the work of Zadie Smith. But will make it a point to check it out. Thanks.


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