Recognitions

I had read no Proust at the time. I was much struck by the freedom from constraint and expectation I suddenly enjoyed. Thereafter, I could complicate my sentences and… More

On Wise Blood

As Flannery’s friend, as well as her editor and publisher from the start, I marveled at her excellence as a writer and regretted her early death. I first met… More

Deranged Punctilio

“I lay inert on the bed and it took three women to put on my trousers. They didn’t seem to take much interest in my private parts, which to… More

Bad Behavior

Prose fiction was born Protestant. It is a child of the Enlightenment, and though it has some exotic forebears—romance most nearly, drama and poetry further back—it could only have… More

After the Fall

Without official approval, I should like to dedicate these proceedings to the reading groups and secret Proust readers who are here tonight, and who have produced something called a… More

The White Problem

In Go Tell It on the Mountain, the young protagonist, John Grimes, stands on a hill in Central Park: “He felt like a long-awaited conqueror, at whose feet flowers… More

A Suffering Conscience

A good writer helps to create other writers, and I can recall the first time, in the ’30s, when I read John Steinbeck’s early books, and his stories. To… More

The Invisible Parade

The pleasure that I get from Flannery O’Connor is so intimate that it’s difficult to share. I’ve been trying to think of how to get at her, and it… More

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