Next Monday will be the 150th anniversary of Newton Booth Tarkington’s birth, and the impending occasion has prompted some long-overdue attention to author once called “The Dean of American Letters.”
A couple of months ago I ran across news of the publication of a new collection–Tarkington: Novels & Stories–a Library of America volume that includes The Magnificent Ambersons, Alice Adams, and In the Arena. This week, LOA has run an extensive interview with Thomas Mallon, the volume’s editor.
Among other things, Mallon observes: “Tarkington saw the humming assembly lines and puffing smokestacks as a bad thing even while they were pumping out prosperity. He thought industrialization was doing bad things to human nature as well as to the landscape. It’s a perspective worth entertaining.”
The interview is a good read, well worth taking the time with whether you’re just thinking about reading Tarkington or are a big fan. Click here for more.
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