The Accidental Tourist Essay

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In the following excerpt, McMurtry discusses the way in which Tyler reintroduces her customary themes of sibling bonding and the hapless male protagonist in The Accidental Tourist.

In Anne Tyler's fiction, family is destiny, and (nowadays, at least) destiny clamps down on one in Baltimore. For an archeologist of manners with Miss Tyler's skills, the city is a veritable Troy, and she has been patiently excavating since the early 1970's, when she skipped off the lawn of Southern fiction and first sank her spade in the soil which has nourished such varied talents as Poe, Mencken, Billie Holiday and John Waters, the director of the films Pink Flamingos and Polyester.

It is without question some of the fustiest soil in America; in the more settled classes, social styles developed in the 19th century withstand, with spore-like tenacity, all that the present century can throw at them. Indeed, in...

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This section contains 1,586 words
(approx. 4 pages at 400 words per page)
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