John Updike | Critical Essay by Joseph Epstein

This literature criticism consists of approximately 5 pages of analysis & critique of John Updike.
This section contains 4,282 words
(approx. 15 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Critical Review by James Shapiro

Critical Essay by Joseph Epstein

SOURCE: “John Updike: Promises, Promises,” in Commentary, Vol. 75, No. 1, January, 1983, pp. 54–8.

In the following essay, Epstein provides an overview of Updike's literary career, fiction, and critical assessment. According to Epstein, Updike's fiction is undermined by the author's preoccupation with prose style and the subject of sex.

In her memoir, A Backward Glance, Edith Wharton speaks of the advantages of not being considered promising. It was better, she thought, at least in her own case, “to fight my way to expression through a thick fog of indifference.” Fighting his way through “a thick fog of indifference” has not quite been John Updike's problem in his career as a novelist. From his earliest novels Updike has had powerhouse critics behind him, among them Mary McCarthy, Arthur Mizener, Stanley Edgar...

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This section contains 4,282 words
(approx. 15 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Critical Review by James Shapiro