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Wangling

Hermione Lee: Katherine Anne Porter, 12 February 2009

Collected Stories and Other Writings 
by Katherine Anne Porter, edited by Darlene Harbour Unrue.
Library of America, 1039 pp., $40, October 2008, 978 1 59853 029 2
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... want to escape it. Porter was not a great admirer of Faulkner, but she was very sympathetic to Eudora Welty and Flannery O’Connor. Like them she paid close attention to children’s and women’s lives, to the private worlds of vulnerable figures in a strongly familial, traditional, religious and intrusive society. It would be possible to pigeonhole ...

And he drowned the cat

Tessa Hadley: Jean Stafford’s Pessimism, 18 June 2020

Complete Novels 
by Jean Stafford.
Library of America, 912 pp., £34, November 2019, 978 1 59853 644 7
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... alienation and disenchantment of the mid-century zeitgeist as – for example – her contemporary Eudora Welty doesn’t, though Welty’s Mississippi ought to feel more remote than Stafford’s Boston. I’m stalled on the threshold of Boston Adventure by the self-consciousness of the highly wrought prose. By ...

This Condensery

August Kleinzahler: In Praise of Lorine Niedecker, 5 June 2003

Collected Works 
by Lorine Niedecker, edited by Jenny Penberthy.
California, 471 pp., £29.95, May 2002, 0 520 22433 7
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Collected Studies in the Use of English 
by Kenneth Cox.
Agenda, 270 pp., £12, September 2001, 9780902400696
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New Goose 
by Lorine Niedecker, edited by Jenny Penberthy.
Listening Chamber, 98 pp., $10, January 2002, 0 9639321 6 0
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... experiences, but like a number of brilliant American provincials – Flannery O’Connor and Eudora Welty come to mind – Niedecker took what she needed and returned home. She made several further trips to the city in the mid-1930s to visit Zukofsky and Reisman, and they made a pilgrimage to Black Hawk Island in 1936, but Niedecker essentially ...

Creamy Polished Globes

Blake Morrison: A.E. Coppard’s Stories, 7 July 2022

The Hurly Burly and Other Stories 
by A.E. Coppard, edited by Russell Banks.
Ecco, 320 pp., £16.99, March 2021, 978 0 06 305416 5
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... the Month choice was unknown. But as Russell Banks points out in the preface to The Hurly Burly, Eudora Welty, Elizabeth Bowen, Robert Frost and Carl Sandburg had led a campaign on Coppard’s behalf. In the 1970s, he had another revival in the UK after a couple of his stories were adapted for television and Lessing put together a selection. But by the ...

Good Fibs

Andrew O’Hagan: Truman Capote, 2 April 1998

Truman Capote: In which Various Friends, Enemies, Acquaintances and Detractors Recall His Turbulent Career 
by George Plimpton.
Picador, 498 pp., £20, February 1998, 0 330 36871 0
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... rather, for womanly fine-tuning, and for subtle new writing by people such as Jean Stafford and Eudora Welty; and beyond that it was one of the robust new advertising venues, like Mademoiselle, one of the postwar places devoted to a new sort of self-making. Capote did not reflect a generation, as Fitzgerald had done, or seek to scrub the world new with ...

King of Razz

Alfred Appel Jr: Homage to Fats Waller, 9 May 2002

... so many writers have admired and loved him, including Hemingway, John O’Hara, Philip Larkin and Eudora Welty, whose ‘Powerhouse’, probably the best story about jazz, was written in 1939 (published in 1941) after she had seen Waller perform a one-night stand with a ragtag big band in her home town of Jackson, Mississippi. Her version of Waller turns ...

Desperately Seeking Susan

Terry Castle: Remembering Susan Sontag, 17 March 2005

... What was Adrienne Rich’s girlfriend like? When was somebody ever going to spill the beans on Eudora Welty and Elizabeth Bowen?Was there some way, I wonder now, that she wanted me to absolve her? Was the fact that she never mentioned, on any of the occasions we talked, her equally prominent female companion – they lived in the same Manhattan ...

A Journey in the South

Andrew O’Hagan: In New Orleans, 6 October 2005

... survivors, seeking a way out of town with their plastic bags of photo albums, were a tribute to Eudora Welty. It was the week Southern Gothic became a form of social realism, the grotesque and the biblical stepping out to fulfil an old legacy. But the aspect of New Orleans that will remain in the memory is the ghostliness: every citizen an image ...

In the Egosphere

Adam Mars-Jones: The Plot against Roth, 23 January 2014

Roth Unbound: A Writer and His Books 
by Claudia Roth Pierpont.
Cape, 353 pp., £25, January 2014, 978 0 224 09903 5
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... edition. It wasn’t the first time a living author’s work had been honoured in this way: Eudora Welty and Saul Bellow went before him. But being received into the canon is normally a Moses deal. You may be able to see it in the distance, but you don’t get to go there yourself. All the more surprising in Roth’s case, since he is known for his ...

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