redeeming disadvantages

8 March 2012 at 05:06 Leave a comment

I have a hard time writing off Franzen as biased against women writers per se, given that I only learned about geniuses like Christina Stead and Paula Fox because of his energetic efforts on behalf of their neglected books. The way I read it, he wants to see Wharton as, at heart, “an isolate and a misfit, which is to say a born writer,” and no doubt a lot like himself. In the same way that a novelist uses a character’s desire to coax readers into sympathy across boundaries of gender, class, race and time, for Franzen, teasing out this kinship is what stirs his sympathy and allows him to identify with Wharton.

-Laura Miller, The private lives of great writers, Salon, 7 Mar 2012

What I find odd is that Franzen found her unsympathetic because of her life of privilege. That one had to have a “redeeming disadvantage”. I just sort of get stuck there.

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Entry filed under: reading, think.

writing is writing A neutral being

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T. Anderson Painter

I am a misanthrope. No one ever believes me, but this seems to prove my point.

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