John Cheever | Criticism

This literature criticism consists of approximately 22 pages of analysis & critique of John Cheever.
This section contains 5,756 words
(approx. 20 pages at 300 words per page)
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SOURCE: “The Passion of Nostalgia in the Short Stories of John Cheever,” in Critical Essays on John Cheever, edited by R. G. Collins, G. K. Hall & Company, 1982, pp. 219-30.

In the following essay, Kendle maintains that Cheever's stories are unified by a “passionate attempt to retain and foster an image” of an Eden-like past manifested in places, patterns of behavior, or inner innocence.

“it is a passion of nostalgia” 

Henry James, letter to William Dean Howells, 1904

The passionate attempt to retain and foster an image of an innocent past unifies the rich and varied fictional world in the stories of John Cheever.1 His characters obsessively pursue this image of lost innocence, often their own, sometimes simultaneously registering the painful reality that motivates this nostalgia. Different characters may view the world through contrasting perspectives; the dual vision may exist within a single character; the tone of a story may...

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This section contains 5,756 words
(approx. 20 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Critical Essay by Burton Kendle
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Critical Essay by Burton Kendle from Gale. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.