In the American Grain Criticism

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When Williams wrote In the American Grain and saw it published by the small American literary firm of Albert and Charles Boni, he was a middle-aged poet of little repute. Although he had produced a number of volumes of poetry that have since been recognized as masterpieces, these books had been published by small presses and found small audiences. In the 1920s, moreover, many readers erroneously lumped him in with the group of American modernist writers located in Paris. Although he often wished to live the life of a bohemian poet in Europe, Williams felt strongly that he had an obligation to his home country and thus remained there. Writing In the American Grain was one way in which he hoped to better understand his vexed but ultimately devoted relationship with the United States.

The book mixes personal meditation with sourcebased history, the voice of the historian with...

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This section contains 1,223 words
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In the American Grain from Nonfiction Classics for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.