Children Of The River Essays

Re:  “On the same thread, Richard mentioned that he himself had written some stuff about Hemingway and McCarthy on his blog.”

No, as I recall, the conversation was this:

Has anyone ever pointed out the connection between “Big Two-Hearted River” and The Road?

And I said, yes, many have mentioned it.  I mentioned it in my pre-publication review of The Road at Amazon, which is the first or second review there, and before that I think it was noted in a first-reading thread here, perhaps by Chip Arnold and Rick Wallach, both of whom read it before I did.

I wasn’t trying to claim credit or wanting to be cited; I was merely affirming that others here saw it too.  I don’t think it was elaborated upon, other than to reflect on the ecological irony between Nick Adams leaving while there was still trout in the stream and the ending of The Road.  If you’re thinking of writing essays, there is nothing from that time that needs citing, certainly nothing I’ve ever written.

Jay Ellis pointed out the climb from complete alienation of fatherhood that appears in McCarthy’s work toward greater and greater reconciliation.  Thus he predicted the relationship between father and son that would appear in The Road, but his book predates any reading of that novel.  In No Place For Home, he discusses the mutual problems that both Hemingway and McCarthy had with women/women characters.  Men will be men, and women will be gone, as Nell Sullivan said in the title of her earlier essay.

I think it was Ken who appended that with reference to the wife’s suicide in The Road, by saying that Men will be men, and women will be Antigone.

[edit]  Actually, the title of Nell Sullivan’s essay was “Boys Will Be Boys and Girls Will Be Gone:  The Circuit of Male Desire in Cormac McCarthy’s Border Trilogy,” The Southern Quarterly, Vol. 38, No. 3, Spring 2000, 167-185.  Of course, she’s published other essays touching on the subject.  See the on-site McCarthy bibliography.

  Richard L.Quote

I don't think adults spend enough time reading children's books. To be sure, not all of them are great grown-up reads, but I'd like to think, both as a parent and an avid reader, that the ones we want to share most with our kids are the ones we should take the time to read on our own, too. Such is the case with "Crown: An Ode to the Fresh Cut" by Derrick Barnes, beautifully illustrated by Gordon C. James, a real standout that reads like spoken word poetry in its bold tenor and lyrical writing. And it's not just a pleasure to read, it also does something important, and that is to show up and show out for black kids, black culture and black language. It's about that time honored tradition for black folks of sitting in the chair at the barbershop, and the power of being seen as a black boy beyond stereotype out here in America. Barnes writes: "A fresh cut does something for your brain, right? It hooks up your intellectual." Hook yourself up with this sweet and mighty book, both for you and your kids.

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