American Writers: Supplement by Leonard Unger, Jay Parini PDF

By Leonard Unger, Jay Parini

ISBN-10: 068431231X

ISBN-13: 9780684312316

This complement provides 18 acclaimed writers, together with Jim Harrison, Alfred Kazin, Bobbi Ann Mason, Thomas Merton, Gary Snyder and others.

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Even the death of Ray’s father is not a linear experience for Ray and his mother. On the way home from the trip to Texas to make funeral arrangements and to sort out the estate, Ray’s mother says, Nothing changes. A point on your compass goes dark. In a few months it won’t matter. It’ll be like he never existed. That wallet is the only thing. He used it, needed it to carry out his life. Now he doesn’t need it, but it’s still ready to carry out a life. We’ll put it in a nice drawer somewhere. Ray’s mother acknowledges that after a while her life will return to what it was before her husband died.

Characters frequently almost take action, regret taking it, or state what they should but do not do. In The Brothers, for instance, Del tells Jen (of Margaret) that he “didn’t screw her. I almost screwed her. . I’m feeling lucky that I didn’t fuck up all the way. ” Whether the question at hand concerns saving one’s marriage or eating a hot dog, the response most often is expressed as “maybe”: “maybe” I’ll move, “maybe” I’ll stay, “maybe” we’ll have sex, “maybe” we’ll get a divorce, “maybe” we’ll have a baby, or “maybe” we’ll order a pizza.

The pro-racist “pathology” of color is left unexplored, as is Half Pint’s willingness to abandon his workingclass origins and submit to humiliation and corruption in realizing his middle-class ambitions. The film makes no effort to reexamine male “power, prestige, and prerogative” and internalizes what Bambara refers to as “the EuroAmerican standard of height, weight, and aggression” in the film’s socialization of the male to exploit and degrade women, who are seen as narcissistic, masochistic, and hysterical.

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American Writers: Supplement by Leonard Unger, Jay Parini


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