Alec Nevala-Lee

Thoughts on art, creativity, and the writing life.

Archive for January 21st, 2012

Hemingway in Faulkner country

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On this occasion Hemingway told me of a recent trip through the South that he had made in a car with his young son. He had at one point suddenly become aware that he had entered the state of Mississippi: “I realized that we were in the Faulkner country.” At the country hotel where they spent the night, he had the boy go to bed, then had sat up all night himself, with his “gun” on the table in front of him. Two ideas, I believe, were revealed by this story, which he told me with the utmost seriousness: the assumption that Mississippi was inhabited by Faulkner characters and the assumption that Faulkner was a dangerous rival, who would take the same view of Hemingway that Hemingway did of him and, now that he had invaded Faulkner’s territory, might well send some of those characters to do him violence. I thought this was rather queer, but no queerer, perhaps, than some other things that came out in drinking conversations.

Edmund Wilson, “That Summer in Paris”

Written by nevalalee

January 21, 2012 at 10:00 am

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