F. W. Dupee was a literary critic and essayist. Dupee was a founding editor of The Partisan Review and literary editor of The New Masses. He taught at Bowdoin, Bard and Columbia.

Flaubert and the Sentimental Education

The Sentimental Education was first published in the Paris of 1869, thirteen years after the triumphant appearance there of Madame Bovary; and the later novel has remained ever since in the long long shadow of the earlier one, waiting for full recognition. The reasons for this preference may seem cogent, …

Doing West

Mr. Jay Martin is described on the jacket of this book as a thirty-four-year-old professor of English at a California university and the author of two earlier books, one on Conrad Aiken, the other on American literary history from 1865 to 1914. The writing of this biography of Nathanael West …

The Uprising at Columbia

NOTE:Here are some impressions of, and reflections upon, the first phase of the Columbia crisis as it was experienced by a member of the faculty. That phase began with the student demonstrations of Tuesday, April 23 and ended with the big police raid during the early hours of Tuesday, April …

Butler’s Way

The Way of All Flesh is one of those books that come down to us trailing a legend. In this case the legend has a real bearing on the nature of the book. One of the features of the legend has to do with the manner of the book’s composition …

Our Man in the Eighteenth Century?

Casanova’s Histoire de ma vie is one of the most exhilarating of narratives; it is also one of the most mystifying. Like some enormous bird, the last of its fantastic species, the Histoire comes to us encrusted with scars yet still proudly levitating in a hostile atmosphere, still holding its …

Wilson Without Reputation

This volume is a re-issue—with alterations and omissions duly acknowledged in the Preface—of a book made out of the author’s experiences in Europe (chiefly England, Italy, and Greece) during the final terrible months of the Second World War. The writing of it was undertaken on assignment for The New Yorker …

Beerbohm: The Rigors of Fantasy

Zuleika (pronounced Zuleeka) Dobson was first published in London in 1911. Other editions followed in Britain and America. The book entered the Modern Library early, when the volumes making up that series were still few and smelt of frivolity, sin, and oilcloth—or whatever those simulated limp leather covers were made …

Truman Capote’s Score

Poor dead Bonnie Clutter appeared to a friend in a dream. “To be murdered,” she wept. “No. No. There’s nothing worse. Nothing worse than that. Nothing.” In Cold Blood is strewn with snatches of pregnant speech, with glimpses of things that grow and grow in the eye of memory. None …

A Laughing Matter

The Lincoln Center Tartuffe is not a masterpiece but it has some distinct assets. The actors in the principal roles are in most cases excellent and hold their own against the often tricky staging. On the whole, however, the director, William Ball, has confined his attentions to externals, trying for …

The Romance of Charles Chaplin

One of the many fine things about this volume is that it includes, along with an exhaustive index and a lot of photographs, a “List of the Films of Charles Chaplin.” Thus we learn that his first movie—or if he insists, film—dates from 1914 and was entitled Making a Living.

To Moscow Again

“The profundity of Chekhov’s works is inexhaustible to the actor,” Stanislavsky said. But under present theater conditions, Chekhov’s profundity, like Shakespeare’s, can involve liabilities, for audience and actors alike. Perhaps it was so even in the patriarchal days of the archetypal Moscow Art Theater, Chekhov’s shrine. There is evidence that …

Sir Richard and Ruffian Dick

In high school a friend and I sometimes managed to get hold of the various volumes of The Arabian Nights in the privately printed translation by Richard Burton. There we found greater wonders than any in “Aladdin and His Lamp” and other expurgated or inauthentic examples of oriental story that …

Nabokov: the Prose and Poetry of It All

Readers of Lolita may recall that Humbert Humbert, who delivers himself of the contents of the book while in confinement awaiting trial for murder, is something of a poet. “You can always count on a murderer for a fancy prose style,” he says, and you can count on this particular …

You’re Welcome

This is a selection from Kenneth Koch’s shorter poems. The volume includes none of his plays nor any passages from Ko or his other more or less lengthy narratives. The omission is perhaps a pity. Koch’s plays have a special appeal: they give a peculiarly succinct and eloquent form to …

James Baldwin and the “Man”

As a writer of polemical essays on the Negro question James Baldwin has no equals. He probably has, in fact, no real competitors. The literary role he has taken on so deliberately and played with so agile an intelligence is one that no white writer could possibly imitate and that …