Episode 79

Weird Era feat. Eliza Barry Callahan


March 15th, 2024

47 mins 39 secs

Season 1

Your Host

About this Episode

About Eliza Barry Callahan:

Eliza Barry Callahan is a writer and artist from New York, New York. Shortly after receiving her BA from Columbia, where she studied visual art, art history, and poetry, she returned to the university where she received her MFA in writing (2022). Her writing has been published in frieze, The Believer, The Brooklyn Rail, and BOMB. She also writes, performs, and releases music via Los Angeles-based label, ANTI- Records with a record forthcoming in 2023.

About The Hearing Test:

A young woman reorients her relationship to the world in the wake of sudden deafness in this mesmerizing debut novel for readers of Rachel Cusk, Clarice Lispector, and Fleur Jaeggy

When the narrator of The Hearing Test, an artist in her late twenties, awakens one morning to a deep drone in her right ear, she is diagnosed with Sudden Deafness, but is offered no explanation for its cause. As the specter of total deafness looms, she keeps a record of her year—a score of estrangement and enchantment, of luck and loneliness, of the chance occurrences to which she becomes attuned—while living alone in a New York City studio apartment with her dog.

Through a series of fleeting and often humorous encounters—with neighbors, an ex-lover, doctors, strangers, family members, faraway friends, and with the lives and works of artists, filmmakers, musicians, and philosophers—making meaning becomes a form of consolation and curiosity, a form of survival.

At once a rumination on silence and a novel on seeing, The Hearing Test is a work of vitalizing intellect and playfulness which marks the arrival of a major new literary writer with a rare command of form, compression, and intent.