On this day, 1970, writer John Dos Passos died in Baltimore, MD. He and my grandmother had an apartment there. Critics who know Dos Passos least dismiss him as a Marxist, naturalist, or political pamphleteer. Those who know him best know he was a writer of many parts. 1919 is a brutal satire but it… Read more »
Posts Tagged: u.s.a.
People have complained before that Dos Passos’ U.S.A. trilogy is hard to read, beyond just the length. I get it. Yes, the language is very plainspoken. You’re not gonna consult the dictionary except in cases of outdated slang. But one of the principal difficulties in tracking characters is that you have to follow both words… Read more »
I’ve been re-reading The 42nd Parallel. It might be the 3rd or 4th reading. I’m nearly finished. With this reconsideration of the work, I was hoping to come into wisdom, and I think I did. I think it’s a novel about selling out. These strivers begin with idealism and potential and the sell out to… Read more »
Happy Independence Day! Whitman was a strong influence on John Dos Passos. I’ve nearly finishing reading Leaves of Grass and then I’m on to Democratic Vistas. I’m enjoying the read so far. It’s wonderful to sense that the nation is counting a bumper crop, when the news today suggests something more reminiscent of utter disaster…. Read more »
It’s been a remarkable couple years for the John Dos Passos legacy. I feel so fortunate to have witnessed it. Last year saw a major Dos Passos reference on the popular, critically-acclaimed TV show Mad Men. For his name to be included in a work of art that has been a milestone in the lives… Read more »
Never seen this cover art before. Pretty awesome. Very much in keeping with the monolithic societal forces at work in the novels. Consulting with a colleague, I’ve learned that this is probably the first British edition of U.S.A. You’re never far from a friend of Dos Passos.