From the journals of one of our most distinguished critics comes an extraordinary panorama of the intellectual, social and political culture of the last half century. Written with the vividness and power of first-rate fiction, it brings to life the great artists and thinkers who shaped the times, including Saul Bellow, Bernard Malamud and Hannah Arendt, and shares Kazin's insights on politics, literature, Jewish life after the Holocaust and American society. It is an immensely rich and resonant memoir from an observer whose eloquence can imbue each moment lived with a lifetime of thought and passion.
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In On Native Grounds, the classic work of literary criticism published in 1942, Alfred Kazin helped to define American literature and its relationship to the time and place from which it emerged. The intervening decades have not always been kind to the tradition of literary criticism that he helped create or the literature he helped define. "Where," he writes, "is the writer to be found who will have the inner certainty to see our life with the eyes of faith, and so make the world shine again?" This collection of journal entries follows Kazin's journey into dismay, if not despair, as well as his inward search for something that might provide a foundation for hope.About the Author:
Alfred Kazin was born in Brooklyn in 1915. His first book, On Native Grounds, published in 1942, revolutionized critical perceptions of American literature. It was followed by many more books of essays and criticism, including A Walker in the City and, most recently, Writing Was Everything.
Kazin has taught at Harvard, Smith, Amherst, Hunter College, and the Graduate Center of the City University of New York. In 1996, he received the Truman Capote Literary Trust's first Lifetime Award in Literary Criticism.
Kazin lives in New York City.
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