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them Essay & Criticism

This Study Guide consists of approximately 87 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of them.
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Critical Overview

When them was first published, critics focused, naturally enough, on the contemporary elements of the book, comparing the urban world that Oates described to the one at hand. Reviewing the book for The New York Times Book Review, Robert M. Adams found it to be "an impressive piece of fictional construction," and he expressed the opinion that it was more "a step forward" than her previous novel. One particular weakness that Adams pointed out was the "extended satire on a group of rather tiresome psychotics supposed to represent the New Left as it flourished in Detroit a few years ago," referring to the book's Mort Piercy and his conspirators: "fictionally speaking," Adams wrote, "they are just not worth the effort." He also was uncomfortable with the letters from Maureen, addressed to "Miss Oates": "the situation seems arch and contrived beyond any psychological or narrative advantage which it in...

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This section contains 763 words
(approx. 3 pages at 300 words per page)
Purchase our them Study Guide
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them 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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