Joyce Carol Oates tweets: With ISIS, ‘is there nothing celebratory & joyous?’

Joyce Carol Oates

Author Joyce Carol Oates asks on Twitter, “All we hear of ISIS is puritanical & punitive; is there nothing celebratory & joyous? Or is query naive?”

(Francine Orr / Los Angeles Times)

Prolific novelist and enthusiastic Twitter user Joyce Carol Oates had readers scratching their heads over the weekend with a tweet that wondered why we never hear anything "celebratory & joyous" about the terrorist group Islamic State, also known as ISIS:

Oates, a five-time Pulitzer Prize finalist, recipient of the National Humanities Medal and rumored Nobel Prize in literature contender, followed that tweet up with some others, apparently attempting to clarify her question:

Twitter users reacted with a mixture of confusion and sarcasm:

A few came to the writer's defense:

This is far from the first time that a tweet from Oates has caused the Internet to do a double-take. In June, she retweeted a photo of "Jurassic Park" director Steven Spielberg posing with a dead triceratops (fake, we assure you), adding, "So barbaric that this should still be allowed... No conservation laws in effect wherever this is?" (She later said the post was a joke.)

The author also drew criticism for a tweet last year that read "'Cat food' in China actually is," following it up with, "Is this not true?Everyone seems outraged! A friend who has traveled to China a dozen times has said this. (Is he mistaken?)" That observation prompted another Twitter user to suggest Oates do what she does best.