There's so much to say about the prolific john updike that i've filed a second story... and still didnt have room to get into topics like his take on male sexuality, his very funny Bech books, or his very fine art and book criticism. (his new yorker review of "my name is red" turned me on to turkish writer orhan pamuk, for instance.)
this piece came out of something i noticed over the years: when interviewing writers -- especially younger ones, experimentalists, literary science-fiction types, or west coast partisans -- i could often set my watch by how long it took them to knock udpike. it was a way of saying, "i dont do that stodgy, patriarchal realist stuff."
some of this, i imagine, is the usual generational warfare, as bret easton ellis suggests in my piece: eliot and his generation of modernists tore into the entire romantic tradition just as punk rockers initially dismissed almost the entire school of '60s songcrafted that preceded them. but there's more to it than that.
anyway, hope readers enjoy the piece and i welcome comments. i must admit that in college, where i was a thomas pynchon devotee, i had some sympathy for the anti-updike argument.
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