Brusselmans – De Standaard

History of Modern Literature, the new book by Herman Brusselmans, caused quite a stir and negative reactions in the land of literature, entirely as expected: in The morning last Tuesday was even the newspaper headline ‘Brusselmans is dead’ to be found. It is striking that the authors of the negative reviews, columns, blog pieces and Facebook posts in question rarely feel too bad to mention that they themselves, just like just about everyone who uses a pen in the Low Countries or ever used by Brusselmans in his bulky ‘study’. That seems to be honest and generous of those people, but it is also a little deceptive, because Brusselmans History certainly also has nice to very nice words, both for the usual suspects such as Delphine Lecompte and Tom Lanoye and for more unexpected names such as Ivo Victoria and Peter Terrin. The enthusiasm he shows with regard to the work of Heere Heeresma, author of, among others, Heavy stories for central heating, turns out to put even the one for Gerard Reve in the shade.

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