His many dramas were among the most popular by American authors and several are considered to be among the best American plays, among them the classics, The Crucible, All My Sons, A View from the Bridge and, above all, the iconic American drama, Death of a Salesman.
Joseph Heller was an American writer of satirical novels, short stories and plays. Although he wrote several acclaimed novels, his reputation rests firmly on his masterpiece, the great American anti-war satire, Catch Ernest Hemingway was a novelist, short story writer, and journalist. He published seven novels, six short story collections, and two non-fiction works, and won the Nobel Prize for Literature in Raymond Chandler was a British-American novelist who wrote several screenplays and short stories. He published seven novels during his lifetime.
The first, The Big Sleep, was published in An eighth, Poodle Springs , unfinished at his death, was completed by another great crime writer, Robert B Parker. Her most famous novel is the novel, Bel oved. Vladi mir Vladimirovich Nabokov was a Russian-American novelist, and also a famous entomologist, specialising in butterflies, a topic on which he wrote several academic books. Her reputation is based mainly on her short stories. She was a Southern writer and relied heavily on regional settings and typically southern characters. John Ernst Steinbeck was the author of 16 novels and various other works, including five short story collections.
John Updike was a novelist, short story writer and poet. He was also a literary and art critic.
In the next decade important women writers also published novels. His masterpiece, The Scarlet Letter , is a drama about a woman cast out of her community for committing adultery. Library of Congress. Gershom Scholem. Buenos Aires: Editorial La Plyade. The fact that this literary boom generated such translation activ- ity into various European languages was taken as a sign of the maturity of Latin American culture, a coming into its own, as it were. Santi compares to Orientalism:.
Kurt Vonnegut was an American writer who published fourteen novels, three short story collections, five plays, and five works of non-fiction. Silly, silly list. Chandler, Vonnegut, Updike, Steinbeck? Are you serious? This list consists of 17 men and 3 women. Toni Morrison is the only person of color on this list. May I suggest whoever wrote this broden their literary horizons? Should be 18 men and 2 women. This series brings to children a wide selection of favourite stories. Included here are the classics.. A collection of the Gothic master''''s classic works in prose and verse.
Enriched Classics offer.. Born to an unfortunate heritage, orphaned, unsympathetically raised, and then abandoned, Edgar Allan.. Ask for Price. Insatiable cupidity. Overreaching ambition. The Reformation, of course, saw this solitary kind of monasticism as disparaging the body and regarded its denials as unscriptural. The latter charge holds partial truth because Jesus was not a solitary, except on crucial occasions, but a man of public involvement. Such reservations about ascetic solitude would not bring Mason Tarwater out of the woods.
Far from being persuasive, advice from the heathen culture that Mason abjures only reassures him of the value of flight. Indeed, the old man celebrates his status as stranger in an estranging world. He is incomprehensibility in human form. He does know that to reach God he must pull away from society, and his place on the edge of the settled land marks a more daring displacement than geographical remoteness.
This chapter explores the primary impulses and cultural significance of asceticism and the trials of solitude in The Violent Bear It Away. Briefly to historicize the novel is to glimpse a world where the engagements register both the terrors driving a person to find refuge from society and the political urgencies calling to the solitary for help.
During the fourteen years that Mason lives as a solitary—fighting The Prophet and the Word in the Desert 81 his inner demons and dedicating himself to raising his grandnephew to be a prophet—the powerful nations committed themselves to turning the planet into a charnel house.
In November , the year Francis Marion Tarwater was born, Kristallnacht inaugurated through mob violence the systematic oppression of German Jews; then there was the wearing of the yellow stars, followed by deportations and finally the camps. The people who are hated in the mighty European power are honored in the primitive Tennessee woods.
The Violent Bear It Away reaches all the way back to Moses, Ezekiel, Elijah, John the Baptist, and Jesus to show how asceticism and prophecy join forces to combat the demons spreading their crepe wings over the modern world. The vaunted scientific progress of the twentieth century spawned a technology of death. Ovens, crematories, gas chambers, and artillery wiped out over fifty million people during World War II with businesslike productivity that occasioned patriotic celebration.
Disintegration continued after peace treaties were signed. These were some of the social forces darkening the period in which the Tarwater chronicle unfolds. For the hermit novelist, the vortex of 82 Richard Giannone political and psychological turmoil is the inborn center of the person, of the spirit. Divided within, they are uprooted from their native ground and alienated from God.
In advance of and alongside Vatican II —65 , she conducted a one-woman aggiornamento that brought her readers and church into vital confrontation with the modern world, which in a sense became her hermitage.
Ascetic life belongs to the unreformed past that these advanced people of gumption, whose guidance comes from their own private will, have outgrown. Willful they are, but renouncers they become, amazed and blessed by having their cherished personal wishes violated and brought into alignment with God. They all end up where there is no company, where nobody can follow. This strange land of surrender is Powderhead. The Violent Bear It Away sets out to draw more firmly that vanishing boundary between a world hostile to life and a sphere of true human order fostering dignity and holiness. Powderhead marks off that border.
Its red hills contain a deep withinness. Daily life is a struggle to maintain footing on the hard ground of being. The truths of Powderhead are known to old Mason, for they run deep in his nature and teaching. The red soil, fed by the sun, reveals the plan and promise of God as taking all time to complete. This hidden warfare demands a life of self-denial and discipline ascesis to resist the enemy. Mason is a seasoned veteran of this unseen war against inner evil, and he knows that the struggle is excruciating and fought with meager human resources against superior opponents.
And so, over the years, Mason wanders into the remotest parts of the woods to thrash out his willfulness with the Lord. There are other powerful demons in Mason to rend. Even the teacher needs correction. The wounds Mason suffers in wrestling with God are acute.
Exhaustion plunges Mason deeply into his heart so as to know its waywardness, its capacity for evil, and its self-deception. He grasps these modulations from within the shattered condition he shares with all humankind. Mason achieved the almost impossible task of being a holy man in evil times. He stood guard over sacred texts in the face of public reproach. His is a life well lived. With Jesus, Mason fights against Satan. The outcome of his solitary 84 Richard Giannone warfare and the goal of his teaching are one and the same: freedom. In this sacramental way, Tarwater, his disciple, comprehends the search for God through living principles in everyday activities.
The route to this recognition for young Tarwater runs across his pubertal body, through the wilderness of his tormenting choices, and into the solitude of his cracked heart. In their quest for holiness, the ancient ascetics were preoccupied with contending desires, and it was precisely the private will that blocked their search. Only by taming the personal will can one move toward God Sayings, Poemen 54 .
A better position from which to understand the demonology in The Violent Bear It Away can be achieved if one pauses briefly to consider the view of evil forces held by the desert mothers and fathers. With the rest of the ancient world, the hermits believed in supernatural beings, both helpful angels, or messengers and harmful satans, or adversaries.
The ammas and abbas persistently probed from various directions the operation of these powerful beings. Dorotheos of Gaza, in his Discourses, puts his inquiry with the prosaic brilliance characteristic of the desert-dwellers. Such clear-eyed perceptions provided the groundwork on which the solitaries built their knowledge of their opponents. Demons from the Greek daimones , the hermits came to realize, were deceitful agents waging war against the true God and Jesus. The desert The Prophet and the Word in the Desert 85 solitaries mortified their wills and bodies to develop the self-mastery needed to combat the hosts of wickedness assaulting them.
That same ascetic control is the discipline that young Tarwater must cultivate to overcome the identical evil agents attacking him. Satan targets the boy precisely because he is raised to serve God. Indeed, the demons swarming both the modern and the ancient worlds hold a special animosity for anyone with spiritual longings. Whether defeated or successful, the devil never lets up.
Never far away and always dusting the human mind with dissuasions, the evil spirits rush to check any inclination toward God. With updated garb and southern vernacular easy maneuvers for spirits , the demons pursue their fixed goals against Tarwater: they hate him and put obstacles before any good that his great-uncle had taught him to seek.
Insinuation is a mere preliminary to the domination they seek over him. The metaphor of thought-flow comes from the Greek logismos, an important word in patristic texts that means thought or idea. In ascetic-monastic usage, logismos most frequently occurs in the plural, logismoi, and is invariably allied to demons to mean evil or passionate thoughts. Evagrius, a learned Greek among unlettered Egyptian hermits, intending to teach the cunning of demons, in the Praktikos enumerates eight logismoi the seven deadly sins plus acedia through which the evil spirits harmfully influence humans.
As demons are the source of evil, the logismoi describe for Evagrius the means and effects of stirring up the human senses 6—14 [16—20]. The logismos usually begins by appealing to the human mind through physical gratification and then imbues the mind as an idea that tempts the person to commit evil. If the person yields to the thought, the temptation gathers a propulsive momentum of its own, and the demon penetrates from the conscious mind into the heart.
Here the evil stream swirls and thickens to occlude the heart so that its responsiveness to others and its yearning for 86 Richard Giannone God are stopped. The logismoi register their invasion of the heart in eerie ways. The fantasies and obsessions commonly associated with demonic possession take hold. More sinister than these histrionic displays is the unseen deadening inertia of the spirit at the very center of emotional life. The heart loses its fluidity of freedom in favor of becoming a bound accomplice to the demon burrowed into the heart, twisting its rightful attention from God into self-interest.
At this point, the demon gets Tarwater to drown in cold blood the very child that Mason ordered Tarwater to save by baptizing him. What makes this interior desert so painful for Tarwater is that, unlike the elders and Mason, the boy does not seek it. In fact, he flees from hardship, restraint, and solitude; but the discipline of his two unsought deserts is crucial to his moral calling. As the hermits reflected on sacred history, desert solitude was in their consciousness the basic experience of prophetic life.
The desert that imposes hardship is for Moses and Elijah the ground of contact with God. As Elijah comforted the distressed, he also made the comfortable into the uncomfortable. To show the making of a new prophet for our time, The Violent Bear It Away incorporates the wisdom of fourth-century elders with the scriptural precedent on which prophecy rests.
Both ministries are onerous. This conflict immerses the future prophet in a trial of wills. Such warring of multiple wills in one person is the first and unceasing struggle of the desert and the essential drama of The Violent Bear It Away. Combat begins in mourning, which is a solitude not shared with his uncle-protector or any other person. The summons to solitude is to prepare Tarwater for the important work in his future. As solitude initiates the novice into the trials of the desert, the situation simultaneously incites the ancient adversary into aggressively taking up his opposition to anyone called to carry out the plan of his sempiternal opponent, God.
When the boy is alone, the devil makes his move; and the logismos stirs. The communication is subtle yet tangible. The bereft boy does come into contact with a force that he had never before felt so intimately. The spookiness registers a revealing sensation. The arrival of this alien psyche causes a physical discomfort that warns of the numbness and morose pain to come from the subsequent demonic provocations.
Demon rum joins the fray to inebriate the boy. Disappearance is the illusion behind all demonic illusions. Tarwater chooses himself. He torches Powderhead under the soused belief that he is cremating Mason and flees to his uncle, George Rayber, in the city. Like Elijah, the ancient desert-dwellers, and Saint Francis of Assisi, Tarwater takes nothing material for his journey. Unlike his predecessors, however, the Tennessee boy in his poverty relies not on God but on himself.
The result is the greater poverty of egotism, a magnet for the demonic preceptors of adolescence ready to coddle him with delusions of adequacy. These velocities assume various guises but share the common ruse of befriending Tarwater for what is least admirable in him.
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The logismoi carry Tarwater into the mainstream of American life. Moving in the urban currents, he can live and breathe a culture that exalts the private will over everything else. Fawcett Meeks, a salesman of copper parts, drives the boy in darkness to the city and promotes its vices. Time is money; people are money; love makes money; money is god.
Wealth in the Sayings and Lives of the desert is frequently linked to sadness and aggression, and Meeks exemplifies the connection. Everyone this grim huckster encounters becomes the object of emotional assault as he breaks down their humanness into sales figures.
The desert ascetics, who struggled with material attachments, came to an understanding of clinging to things that exposes the demon in Meeks and the suffering he brings on himself. A vignette from the Sayings also warns of the psychological harm to the person who values goods over people and effectively disregards support from God. The saying tells of an old man who helped some thieves when they were stealing.
Such profound faith frees one from care. From this detachment and inner freedom flows compassion toward others.
Meeks, the flagrant antithesis of this freedom from care, rushes around the South in the anxiety of spirit that the ascetics and Mason struggled to avoid. Attachment to material gain enslaves Meeks to the point at which he has cut off feeling for others. Ascetic spirituality sees self-will as the impulse that replaces God with the self as the source of life and meaning; and for that reason the will, for the hermits, presents the greatest danger in solitary life. For the desert teachers, self-will is hell; and hell is what Tarwater experiences in the city as anger and pride impel him deeper into his personal desires and further from God.
Upon entering the city, the atmosphere imposes resistance, emits peril, and inflicts reprimand. The logismoi swell his head and distort his perceptions. People, places, events, and God come into his view as challenges to or validations of his will. The three characters Tarwater encounters torment him merely by their presence. Lucette Carmody unnerves Tarwater by her apostolic zeal, which reminds him of Mason and the call to prophecy.
The crippled girl The Prophet and the Word in the Desert 91 evangelist lives by the singleness of heart and vision that recognizes the material world, the human person Jesus, and his rising from the dead as outpourings of the Logos. Bishop is joy and love—qualities of the Logos—love unguarded and a capacity for pleasure bound only by the reaction of others to his spiritual freshness.
To prevent the possibility that Tarwater might spitefully christen Bishop, Rayber yanks his son from the water. Thanks to the competing logismoi, pain unites Rayber and Tarwater where love could not; for as Bishop sobs, father and cousin remain unmoved by anguish and deaf to the Logos. The crazed attack comes the 92 Richard Giannone day after the park excursion, as night sets in at the Cherokee Lodge, where Rayber takes Tarwater and Bishop for an overnight outing. Tarwater lowers Bishop into the boat, takes him to the opposite bank of the lake, and drowns him.
The murder is the sheerest butchery. There is another demonic horror at work in the scene. Rayber observes the killing from his room in the lodge, and he feels nothing as Tarwater drowns Bishop. The background of silence marks the enormous changes in the inner world of all three characters. For Rayber, this silence is the chill demonic aftershock of deafness to the Logos.