The Swimmer | Criticism

This literature criticism consists of approximately 16 pages of analysis & critique of The Swimmer.
This section contains 3,575 words
(approx. 12 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Critical Essay by Stanley J. Kozikowski

SOURCE: Kozikowski, Stanley J. “Damned in a Fair Life: Cheever's ‘The Swimmer.’” Studies in Short Fiction 30, no. 3 (summer 1993): 367-75.

In the following essay, Kozikowski views “The Simmer” as a spiritual allegory, akin to the work of Dante Alighieri.

Cheever's ever-popular, many-faceted short story, “The Swimmer,” accommodates various readings, particular and universal. Within its range of appeal, for instance, it has been read as suggestive autobiography,1 contemporary American Odyssey (Hunt 280-83), dazzling literary structure (Kruse 221), as a “midsummer's nightmare” (Bell 433), sacramental parody (Blythe and Sweet 393), realism yielding to fantasy (Blythe and Sweet 415) and Neddy Merrill dead in Hades (Cervo 49-50). I propose that the story, along with its literal and figural resonances, has the suggestive depth of a spiritual allegory in the fashion of Dante, whom Cheever admired, and whose influence he acknowledged affectionately.2 As a terse and grim Commedia, “The Swimmer” evinces a pattern of meaning that enlarges...

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This section contains 3,575 words
(approx. 12 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Critical Essay by Stanley J. Kozikowski
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Critical Essay by Stanley J. Kozikowski from Gale. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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