Starting Out in the Thirties
by Alfred Kazin
Atlantic Monthly Press, 1965, 166 pp., $4.95
Having no intention of irony, I would say right off that the most impressive quality of Alfred Kazin’s memoir of his young intellectual manhood is its non-authoritativeness. Authority, or rather its simulacra—heavy, unassailable opinions, correct readings of the archives, documented pronouncements of damnation or absolution—these are what we have come to expect from radicals recalling their pasts. But Kazin, while in no sense a daunted or even a modest man, is engaged here in something other than the validation of personal history or the establ...
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