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A Cynthia Ozick Reader Hardcover – May 1, 1996

5.0 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Library Journal

These two collections reflect the imaginative, inventive, and insightful Ozick. Some of the best of Ozick as poet, essayist, and fiction writer is represented in A Cynthia Ozick Reader, including the poems "Greeks," "The Fish in the Net," and "When That with Tragic Rapture Moses Stood" and the short stories "Envy," "Virility," and "Puttermesser and Xanthippe." Besides seven poems and seven fiction pieces, including a selection from Ozick's epic novel, Trust, there are eight provocative essays taken from her previous collections, focusing on the secret humanness underlying the literary lives of Virginia Woolf and Edith Wharton, the demise of a literary culture, classical vs. modern feminism, and her cherished Henry James. This anthology is a good introduction to the range of styles, themes, and ideas in her writing. Essayist Ozick shines further in Fame & Folly, a new collection of 17 typically provocative, sometimes witty essays. Most of these focus on the various life experiences, foibles, and follies of selected literary figures. In the first essay, "T.S. Eliot at 101," Ozick reflects on how Eliot was revered in colleges in the Forties, Fifties, and early Sixties and is almost ignored today. She revisits Eliot in "Helping T. S. Eliot Write Better," an entertaining literary spoof in which, among other things, confusion between T.S. Eliot and George Eliot reigns. In other essays, Ozick focuses on Christian heroism and the Holocaust or reflects on the state of American culture, while a couple of the essays are short fictional pieces. The wide variations in themes and length tend to make this collection uneven and jumbled. Separating the pieces into at least two distinct categories would have lessened frustration for readers. Nevertheless, the essays are well worth reading. Both of these collections should be in public and academic libraries.?Jeris Cassel, Rutgers Univ. Libs., New Brunswick, N.J.
Copyright 1996 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From the Back Cover

Cynthia Ozick is on anybody's list of the ten most important writers in North American today. But she has yet to have her 'break out' book or to achieve anything that remotely approaches a readership commensurate with her talent. This Reader seeks to bring her manifold talents to a wider audience. The poems, stories, and essays in this collection exemplify the energy and capaciousness that characterize her imagination.
--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 322 pages
  • Publisher: Indiana University Press (May 1, 1996)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0253330394
  • ISBN-13: 978-0253330390
  • Product Dimensions: 6.4 x 1.1 x 9.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.6 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,008,514 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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By Lynn Hoffman, author:Radiation Days: A Comedy VINE VOICE on May 21, 2008
Format: Paperback
Of course everyone will commend you to Puttermesser and Xanthippe-a novella of almost operatic drama and sadness. A Mercenary has charms because it so evokes the news in 2008 and Envy is a wicked little piece likely to have lasting appeal.
But I am urging you to buy this book for the sake of one story. It's called Virility. In it, Ozick puts aside her Judeopean, world-weary voice for the clean credulity and wholesome cynicism of a male waspy New Yorker who tells the secret story of one of America's most famous poets and some of the real truths behind the New York literary scene.
I read this back in the 70's and its sour little truth changed the way I thought about men and women in the way that no argument could have.

The other pieces are good too, but get yourself to Virility as soon as you can.
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Format: Paperback
This is an excellent selection of Ozick's work . It includes what in my judgment is the finest piece of fiction that she has written the novella ,'Envy'. It also a number of her outstanding literary and historical reflections including some which touch upon her wise and insightful understanding of Jewish history.
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