Tag Archives: literature

James Salter: the Writer’s Writer who betrayed all Writers (2)

I discussed how Salter achieved greatness in a previous post. This is about how he betrayed his gifts and fellow writers, and even literature, in his later years. After The Hunters (1957) and the similarly-themed The Arm of Flesh (1961), … Continue reading

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James Salter: The Writer’s Writer who betrayed all Writers (1)

When James Salter died in 2015, the consensus obituary went like this (my summary): A great writer’s writer passed away, much esteemed by his fellow writers, but little known by the general public despite the success of his first novel, … Continue reading

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Dante Alighieri, Bad Propagandist (2)

I’ve been reading the French-language series of historical novels Le Rois Maudits, which is excellent (and promoted in English version by George RR Martin: “This is the original Game of Thrones!”). In the third volume, “The Poisoned Crown,” Dante Alighieri, … Continue reading

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Who will be Shot in the Middle Stages of the Zizekian Revolution?

In the first half of his remarks about Henry James’ The Wings of the Dove in The Parallax View, Zizek looks at the way James uses his long, winding, unexpected style to set a scene in a particular way. In … Continue reading

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A New Face in the Snakepit (15)

XV. Victory was an ambiguous concept, that Stalin always had trouble dealing with. He had been successful before: he had managed to escape deportation to Siberia for a second time, by becoming an informer and betraying his comrades; he had … Continue reading

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A New Face in the Snakepit (14)

XIV. Everything had worked as Stalin expected, but Stalin was surprised by the fierceness of the German attack: in a matter of weeks, the Soviet forward armies, caught in their offensive stance and unprepared for defense, were surrounded and destroyed … Continue reading

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A New Face in the Snakepit (13)

XIII. Trotsky’s grisly murder wasn’t the only commotion of the time for Communist fellow travelers. A few weeks before, the French had got what they had been expecting, and a lightning German offensive had tore through their much-hyped defenses, taking … Continue reading

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