THE INNOCENTS AT CEDRO by H. L. Duffus
Kirkus Star

THE INNOCENTS AT CEDRO

By
Email this review

KIRKUS REVIEW

Duffus' first and reluctant venture into autobiography held --for me -- far greater quality than anything else he has written. There's an engaging humor, delicacy and charm to these memoirs of student days at Stanford, when he and his brother (and for a time his father) went to live with Thorstein Veblen to do the chores in exchange for board. The book has been written as further biographical commentary on Veblen, economist, iconoclast, satirist, and of his little known years at Cadre. Shortly after the Duffus' moved in, a second menage was imported to take care of the first. But this was of short duration, and Harry George came as a replacement, a young tubercular who acted as Duffus's second mentor particularly in questions of a more worldly nature. The cooking, of a distinctly improvised nature, the chores with the animals, the evenings with Veblen, who was either silent or very discursive, always a solitary, impersonal, imperturbable, but perhaps happiest in those years. Then end of summer, and Veblen goes away to the woods, and Harry to the desert to die, and there's a breaking up of an idyll of ""youthful hopes, quarrels, idiocies, dreams"". Limited in interest, I suppose, but nostalgically, sensitively recalled.

Publisher: Macmillan