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United States: Essays 1952-1992 - Study Guide "A Note on the Novel" (1956) Summary & Analysis

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In this very brief essay, Gore Vidal asserts that "after 300 years, the novel in English has lost the general reader (or rather the general reader has lost the novel)." That said, it's not the fault of novelists, rather the fault of the audience, which is "an unpleasant accusation to make in a democracy where, ultimately, the taste of the majority is the measure of all things." Vidal reflects that American civilization has come full circle from the Greek mysteries and plays to the printing press and the novel to television and play again. It's as if, he says, the novel was only a stand-in for the drama that used to be limited to theaters. Despite the plethora of "live" plays for television and massive quantities of paperback...

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This section contains 231 words
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Buy the United States: Essays 1952-1992 Study Guide
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