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Ancient History: A Paraphrase

McElroy, Joseph

Published by Knopf, 1971
ISBN 10: 0394469259 / ISBN 13: 9780394469256
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Bibliographic Details


Title: Ancient History: A Paraphrase

Publisher: Knopf

Publication Date: 1971

Binding: hardcover

Edition: 1st Edition.

Description:

New York. 1971. Knopf. 1st American Edition. Remains Of A Price Sticker On Front Free Endpaper,Otherwise Very Good In Dustjacket. 307 pages. April 1971. hardcover. Jacket design by Muriel Nasser. 0394469259. keywords: Literature America. inventory # 8239. FROM THE PUBLISHER - An uninvited guest, entering the empty New York apartment of a man known to intimates as ‘Dom,’ proceeds to write for his absent host a curious confession. Its close accounts of friendship since boyhood with two men surely unknown to Dom and certainly to each other is interleaved with the story of Dom himself. This narrative which at first seems beamed from the narrator’s fear that he may have helped cause Dom’s supposed suicide, opens into the violent geography of Dom’s career as late-Sixties activist-ideologue. It is in one of Dom’s ideas - the physicist’s field-state turned into the psychic space of human community - that the narrator imagines a new way of gauging relationships. Experiences ambush him, memorable, measurably ominous yet open - a boy’s deep and almost disappearing dive into a mountain quarry pool; the flight of a boomerang thrown from the Brooklyn Bridge out toward the Statue of Liberty. New sectors swing into the narrator’s account of middle-class life in the Brooklyn Heights of the 1940s and 50s. Delicate anatomies of old girlfriends performed with nostalgic instinct; anxious confidences, painful and building, roused now by the narrator’s thoughts of his daughter, his wife, and the son from her first marriage. All the while, the two friends Al (from the country) and Bob (from the city) grow toward each other on these pages, as Dom, increasingly alive, seems increasingly distant. Yet at last - as if by some strange grace of nature - the narrator is given a sense of his own life very like the field-state into which he has tried to work his way by use of a controlling craft: the craft of an anthropologist. that of an only child dwelling on friendships. that of an artist looking for America both in its public stars like Dom and more faithfully in familiar mysteries of private life. Remains Of A Price Sticker On Front Free Endpaper,Otherwise Very Good In Dustjacket. Bookseller Inventory # 8239

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