THE BROTHER by Feike Feikema


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The giant primitive descends into the town -- the factory and Greenwich Village-in this second in the trilogy, carrying Thurs through the depression of the thirties. Thurs, stumbling away from an undefined guilt born of a virgin relationship with Hero, back home in Iowa, brings his gargantuan size and innocent generosity to the complexity of the East. Like a wanderer from a time of dinosaurs, mammoth and lonely life, Thurs gropes earnestly to learn the language of society -- away from amorphic ambiguity. Hitching to New York, Thurs is brought into the city by an assortment of human brothers -- amusingly isolated -- intimately realized -- a homosexual procurer named Proudlove, a dedicated helping-hander, a truck driver who loves his car like a woman. But it is in the New Jersey factory that Thurs becomes involved with the top layer of misery, hatred and tired pleasures of a great mass of individuals -- in the early days of strikes, organizing and talk. And Turns tries to channel his lonely desires- in sex, in organized brotherhood and art. However, the faces he meets in Greenwich Village become paralyzed in empty masks -- the joyless women, constricting maxims of the Marxists, the lifeless form of art. Reminiscent of Wolfe in a vital conception of character, but lacking Wolfe's active energy in perspective -- the characters are swept up in the author's conclusions and lose their vitality. However, in spite of the heavy dose of experimental sex, there is plenty of good reading. Not for the fastidious or overly sensitive.

Pub Date: Oct. 26th, 1950
Publisher: Doubleday