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Rufus F.

Rufus is an American curmudgeon in Canada. He has a PhD in History, sings in a garage rock band, and does a bunch of other stuff.

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23 Responses

  1. Avatar Pierre Corneille
    Ignored
    says:

    I’m a fan of Hemingway although I’m disturbed by what appears to be his antisemitism in Sun Also Rises.* But he can come off as a jerk.

    *I can’t decide whether the antisemitism is in his approach to the novel, or simply his recreation of the characters’ attitudes. Or we can drop the “simply” and suggest it’s both and neither, along with some third thing.Report

  2. Avatar Mike Schilling
    Ignored
    says:

    It went both ways. Lewis, who was half a generation older than Hemingway and a bit of a prude, wrote this about him:

    Mister Ernest Hemingway
    Halts his slaughter of the kudu
    To advise you that you may
    Risk his sacerdotal hoodoo
    If you go on day be day
    Speaking priggishly, as you do.
    Come on man, be bravely heard
    Bawling that four-letter word
    And wear your mind decollete
    Like Mister Ernest HemingwayReport

  3. Avatar J.L. Wall
    Ignored
    says:

    My sci-fi Modernist fan fiction novel is going to be titled The Dreiser Menace.Report

  4. Avatar Chris
    Ignored
    says:

    The “Guy” in this is your great grandfather? How friggin’ cool is that!Report

  5. Avatar Jaybird
    Ignored
    says:

    That’s awesome.

    (Obligatory: “You know who else got a Nobel Prize?”)Report

  6. Avatar J@m3z Aitch
    Ignored
    says:

    I feel better for not having ever managed to trudge my way through more than one Sinclair Lewis novel. I always felt a bit bad about that, but perhaps it wasn’t just my own shortcomings at play.Report

    • Avatar Mike Schilling in reply to J@m3z Aitch
      Ignored
      says:

      He’s a terrible plotter. He tends to say the same things over and over, and even a book that’s as fun and energetic as Elmer Gantry would benefit from cutting out some of the repetitive episodes. And his characters tends to be at best two-dimensional. So the Nobel Prize was crazy. Lewis can’t be mentioned in the same breath as Faulkner or Hemingway, because he’s only about fifty times better as a novelist than Ayn Rand.Report

    • Avatar Rufus F. in reply to J@m3z Aitch
      Ignored
      says:

      Lewis is one of those show-your-work kind of writers. He did a massive amount of research for his books, which is great, but then he has to put a lot of it in the foreground, which can get really tedious. Zola coulld be the same way at times. Actually, it reminds me of something my father said after he read American Pastoral: “It was pretty good, but boy I didn’t need to know so much about how gloves are made!”Report

    • Avatar Pierre Corneille in reply to J@m3z Aitch
      Ignored
      says:

      I couldn’t make it through Elmer Gantry, and Main Street was pretty blah (with good parts). I did like Babbitt, although it suffers from what other people have said characterizes it.Report

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