Saturday, November 10, 2007

Servant to a wild man in himself

Charles McGrath's obituary for Norman Mailer at the Times. There's a rather good quotation from Gore Vidal in the opening stretch (it's Vidal rather than Mailer who I feel I have really been engaged with as a reader for all these many years, I like bits of Mailer but never fully immersed myself in his writing):
Gore Vidal, with whom he frequently wrangled, once wrote: “Mailer is forever shouting at us that he is about to tell us something we must know or has just told us something revelatory and we failed to hear him or that he will, God grant his poor abused brain and body just one more chance, get through to us so that we will know. Each time he speaks he must become more bold, more loud, put on brighter motley and shake more foolish bells. Yet of all my contemporaries I retain the greatest affection for Norman as a force and as an artist. He is a man whose faults, though many, add to rather than subtract from the sum of his natural achievements.”

1 comment:

  1. Yikes, Norman Mailer has died! How did I miss that? (You can tell I read your blog before any others, can't you!)