John Freeman

John Freeman is the editor of Grantamagazine. A former president of the National Book Critics Circle, his criticism has appeared in publications around the world, including The Guardian, The Wall Street Journal and The New York Times Book Review. His latest book is The Tyranny of E-mail: The Four-Thousand-Year Journey to Your Inbox.

Book Reviews
7:31 am
Wed March 13, 2013

Rewriting The Self In Gass' Dense, Difficult 'Middle C'

Piano keys
iStockphoto.com

William H. Gass is a glutton of language. Like a chef who can't cook without nibbling, he lards his own writing with similes and metaphors in the spirit of the books he loves, savoring them through imitation. In his essays on literature, this gusto is contagious. You want to taste his taste, to read what he has read. Gass' exuberant, bursting sentences convey the pleasure of reading and thinking better than just about any written since the New Critics took over criticism in the 1950s.

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Monkey See
9:52 am
Thu October 6, 2011

Nobel Literature Winner Tomas Transtromer: The Beauty Of Stillness

Tomas Transtromer, seen in this undated photo, won the Nobel Prize for Literature on Thursday.

Paula Transtromer AP

Originally published on Thu October 6, 2011 4:15 pm

Like a glass-blower by a wintry sea, Tomas Transtromer has been slowly and painstakingly making poems in his native Stockholm since the early 1950s. In his debut work, the modestly titled Seventeen Poems, published when Transtromer was just 23, the Swedish poet imagined Thoreau in the woods, "disappearing deep in his inner greenness/artful and hopeful."

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