Primum Non Nocere

Deborah Treisman intervista Antonya Nelson sul suo ultimo - bel - racconto per il New Yorker.
Your story in this week’s issue, “Primum Non Nocere,” is about the teen-age daughter of a therapist, who is surprised at home by one of her mother’s former patients. Why throw these two characters—the disgruntled “borderline” and the vulnerable adolescent—together? 

The teen-ager, Jewel, is at her own “borderline”—of burgeoning adulthood—and the fact that she’s ready to transform, willingly or not, makes her ripe for exposure. Her transformation is less dramatic than her brother’s was, which also means that it’s more surprising—to her, and probably to her parents. I like the way that psychological extremity can illuminate more “normal” characters by forcing a comparison. How is adolescence a borderline experience? To be poised between worlds, to be “teetering” and vulnerable to forces beyond one’s control? The two characters seem, to me, complementary. newyorker.

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