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The Naked and the Dead Essay | Critical Essay #2

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Critical Essay #2

Miller is an American critic and educator who often contributes to film and literature journals. In the following essay, Miller delineates social and political themes in Mailer's early fiction.

In one of the Presidential Papers Mailer wrote, "Our history has moved on two rivers, one visible, the other underground, there has been the history of politics which is concrete, practical, and unbelievably dull ... and there is the subterranean river of untapped, ferocious, lonely and romantic desires, that concentration of ecstasy and violence which is the dream life of the nation." Much of Mailer's writing, like much of the American writing from which he consciously borrows, is concerned with such dualities. As he declared in "The White Negro," Mailer finds the twentieth century, for all its horror, an exciting time to live because of "its tendency to reduce all of life to its ultimate alternatives." This fascination with dynamic...

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This section contains 1,461 words
(approx. 5 pages at 300 words per page)
Purchase our The Naked and the Dead Study Guide
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The Naked and the Dead from BookRags and Gale's For Students Series. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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