Friday, September 3, 2010

Gornick On Naipaul

While awaiting The Masque of Africa, I dipped into Vivian Gornick's The Men in my Life, and was struck by how this passage captures perfectly the experience of reading V.S. Naipaul over time:

"To read Naipaul steadily is to experience something of the dilemma of an attraction that does not generate love. Three or four hundred pages of strong and original writing applied to a social critique that uniformly withholds sympathy leaves the reader both stimulated and unsatisfied. Inevitably, as the years pass, the experience grows less exciting; the lack of tenderness wears on the nerves."

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