My Spurious Nostalgia for the American Golden Age

I’m nearly finished with The Big Money, the third volume of U.S.A., by John Dos Passos. About every seventy-five pages or so he includes a biography of an important American. I just learned about W.R. Hearst, a relatively unsuccessful politician, whose old man made it big in the gold rush of ’49. Citizen Kane isContinue reading “My Spurious Nostalgia for the American Golden Age”

The Modernist Great American Novel

I just finished John Dos Passos’ 1919, the second installment of U.S.A., one of the Great American Novels. When I looked for it on Bedford Avenue, the bookseller told me that not many people read him any more, which is a shame because he really is great. As Norman Mailer said, “Hemingway, Faulkner, Dreiser, andContinue reading “The Modernist Great American Novel”