Uncategorized | February 10, 2005

Marshall Mathers or Eminem? Deion Sanders or Neon Deion? Louise Veronica Ciccone or Madonna? Which do you prefer? Private identity or public persona? Historical fact or manufactured fiction? For writers of fiction and poetry, in the small space reserved on the inside flap of the dust jacket, does it matter which is told? Does it matter if it’s all just a lie?

Michael P. Kardos, in “Will the Real Jerzy Kosinski Please Stand Up?”, examines one master of the form, a man who embodied, more than any other perhaps, Foucault’s “author-function.” Over the past few years, writers such as Michael Martone and John McNally have been artfully playing with this notion through the concept of “Contributors’ Notes,” blurring the line between fiction and autobiography, between primary text and secondary notes, drawing upon our fascination with the lives and biographies of authors. But Kosinski still sets the standard.

Michael P. Kardos claims to have earned an MFA from The Ohio State University, claims to have been a drummer in a rock band, claims to be working on a novel, and claims to be a student in good standing within the doctoral program in English at the University of Missouri-Columbia. None of which we had reason to doubt–until now. Additionally, someone using the name of Michael P. Kardos has published short stories in Crazyhorse, Prism, River City and the Florida Review.

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