[lit-ideas] Re: one of Exit Ghost's political points

  • From: Eric Yost <mr.eric.yost@xxxxxxxxx>
  • To: lit-ideas@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Fri, 31 Oct 2008 13:27:51 -0400

>>In a real sense the sky did fall, only in real life nobody noticed. It's curious that, apparently, Roth thinks only trustfunded literary types were impotently outraged about that 'election', some of whom make a joke about it. This financial catastrophe is all part and parcel of it.

You, especially, should read _Exit Ghost_. It might make it easier for you to give yourself a break and laugh a bit.

Roth's Zuckerman is a self-described old-fashioned New York Jewish liberal intellectual who cut his political teeth working twice for Adlai Stevenson's campaigns.

At the part of the novel cited, Zuckerman is surrounded by thirty-somethings, none of whom were old enough to be appalled by Nixon or any of the other disappointments that constitute a political memory. For these relative sprouts and yearlings, the 2004 election is "the most important election ever." Ha, isn't it always?

As these self-centered, ambitious, and vain characters fume over Kerry's defeat, Roth records many of the same dire predictions, apocalyptic declarations, and hysterical hate-filled snipes I have heard from friends, acquaintances, and strangers in New York. As a social document goes, Roth is spot on.

Those scenes hold many unconsciously-ironic formulae, part of the orchestrated charade, which could be summarized as, "All those fascist Republicans should be rounded up and shot!"

All the best to you,
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