The colossal ambition of John Updike

Last weekend I wrote about the new collection of early stories by John Updike and suggested that the usual tributes to Updike’s gifts with the language do not do justice to his literary achievement. (Click here for my most recent post on Updike; click here for an earlier post that includes a link to one of his stories about his fictional alter ego Henry Bech.)
Sam Tanenhaus is also unsatisfied with the conventional assessement of Updike; Slate has posted his outstanding piece on Updike’s ambition and accomplishment as seen through the prism of the collection, with a sidelong glance at Updike’s four-and-a-half novels about Rabbit Angstrom: “Rabbit, race.”


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