HEMINGWAY'S NONFICTION: The Public Voice by Robert O. Stephens


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The case for Hemingway's nonfiction as the public key to his private face. Stephens, who offers ample evidence of the variety, value, and vigor of Hemingway's occasional pieces--articles, essays, introductions to other people's works--shows clearly (and repeatedly) the value of the writings as journalism. He is less successful in illustrating their relevance to the fiction as analogue or even as commentary on the novels and stories. More important is correcting the critical slight to the journalism. Until publication of By-Line Ernest Hemingway (1967), these pieces--primarily from the Toronto Star, the front of books, and magazines of the Esquire and Holiday ilk--were not even available to the general reader although they equaled about one-third of his writings. For critics shared with Papa an ambivalence to Hemingway the reporter. Shortly after the filming of The Old Man and the Sea he told a Look reporter: ""As for journalism, that writing of something that happens day by day, in which I was trained when young, and which is not whoring when done honestly with exact reporting, there is no more of that until this book is finished."" He never wrote the book. He often wrote superb journalism.

Pub Date: Oct. 5th, 1968
Publisher: Univ. of North Carolina