Winesburg, Ohio

Note moyenne 3,83
( 23 661 avis fournis par GoodReads )
 
9780140186550: Winesburg, Ohio

Winesburg, Ohio Collects stories that capture the emotional undercurrents hidden beneath ordinary events. Full description

Les informations fournies dans la section « Synopsis » peuvent faire référence à une autre édition de ce titre.

Extrait :

PENGUIN CLASSICS

WINESBURG, OHIO

Born in 1876, SHERWOOD ANDERSON grew up in a small town in Ohio—an experience that was the basis of his greatest achievements as a writer. He served in the Spanish-American War, worked as an advertising man, and managed an Ohio paint factory before abandoning both job and family to embark on a literary career in Chicago. His first novel, Windy McPherson’s Son, was published in 1916; his second, Marching Men, a characteristic study of the individual in conflict with industrial society, appeared in 1917. But it is Winesburg, Ohio (1919), with its disillusioned view of small-town lives, that is generally considered his masterpiece. Later novels—Poor White, Many Marriages, and Dark Laughter—continued to depict the spiritual poverty of the machine age. Anderson died in 1941.

Longtime literary editor of The New Republic, MALCOLM COWLEY (1898–1989) served as president of the National Institute of Arts and Letters in the ‘50s and ‘60s, and was Chancellor of the American Academy of Arts and Letters from 1966 to 1976. The author of numerous works of criticism, essays, and poetry, Cowley’s books include Exile’s Return, A Second Flowering, and The Literary Situation.

SHERWOOD
ANDERSON

Winesburg, Ohio

With an Introduction by
MALCOLM COWLEY

PENGUIN BOOKS

INTRODUCTION

Rereading Sherwood Anderson after many years, one feels again that his work is desperately uneven, but one is gratified to find that the best of it is as new and springlike as ever. There are many authors younger in years—he was born in 1876—who made a great noise in their time, but whose books already belong among the horseless carriages in Henry Ford’s museum at Greenfield Village. Anderson made a great noise too, when he published Winesburg, Ohio in 1919. The older critics scolded him, the younger ones praised him, as a man of the changing hour, yet he managed in that early work and others to be relatively timeless. There are moments in American life to which he gave not only the first but the final expression.

He soon became a writer’s writer, the only story teller of his generation who left his mark on the style and vision of the generation that followed. Hemingway, Faulkner, Wolfe, Steinbeck, Caldwell, Saroyan, Henry Miller …each of these owes an unmistakable debt to Anderson, and their names might stand for dozens of others. Hemingway was regarded as his disciple in 1920, when both men were living on the Near North Side of Chicago. Faulkner says that he had written very little, “poems and just amateur things,” before meeting Anderson in 1925 and becoming, for a time, his inseparable companion. Looking at Anderson he thought to himself, “Being a writer must be a wonderful life.” He set to work on his first novel, Soldier’s Pay, for which Anderson found a publisher after the two men had ceased to be friends. Thomas Wolfe proclaimed in 1936 that Anderson was “the only man in America who ever taught me anything”; but they quarreled a year later, and Wolfe shouted that Anderson had shot his bolt, that he was done as a writer. All the disciples left him sooner or later, so that his influence was chiefly on their early work; but still it was decisive. He opened doors for all of them and gave them faith in themselves. With Whitman he might have said:

I am the teacher of athletes,

He that by me spreads a wider breast than my own proves the width of my own,

He most honors my style who learns under it to destroy the teacher.

As the disciples were doing, most of Anderson’s readers deserted him during the 1930s. He had been a fairly popular writer for a few years after Dark Laughter (1925), but his last stories and sketches, including some of his very best, had to appear in a strange collection of second-line magazines, pamphlets, and Sunday supplements. One marvelous story called “Daughters” remained in manuscript until six years after his death in 1941. I suspect that the public would have liked him better if he had been primarily a novelist, like Dreiser and Lewis. He did publish seven novels, from Windy McPherson’s Son in 1916 to Kit Brandon in 1936, not to mention the others he started and laid aside. Among the seven Dark Laughter was his only best-seller, and Poor White (1920), the best of the lot, is studied in colleges as a picture of the industrial revolution in a small Midwestern town. There is, however, not one of the seven that is truly effective as a novel; not one that has balance and sustained force; not one that doesn’t break apart into episodes or nebulize into a vague emotion.

His three personal narratives—A Story-Teller’s Story (1924), Tar: A Midwest Childhood (1926), and Sherwood Anderson’s Memoirs (1942)—are entertainingly inaccurate; indeed, they are almost as fictional as the novels, and quite as deficient in structure. They reveal that an element was missing in his mature life, rich as this was in other respects. It does not give us, and I doubt that Anderson himself possessed, the sense of moving ahead in a definite direction. All the drama of growth was confined to his early years. After finding his proper voice at the age of forty, Anderson didn’t change as much as other serious writers; perhaps his steadfastness should make us thankful, considering that most American writers change for the worse. He had achieved a quality of emotional rather than factual truth and he preserved it to the end of his career, while doing little to refine, transform, or even understand it. Some of his last stories—by no means all of them—are richer and subtler than the early ones, but they are otherwise not much different or much better.

He was a writer who depended on inspiration, which is to say that he depended on feelings so deeply embedded in his personality that he was unable to direct them. He couldn’t say to himself, “I shall produce such and such an effect in a book of such and such a length”; the book had to write or rather speak itself while Anderson listened as if to an inner voice. In his business life he showed a surprising talent for planning and manipulation. “One thing I’ve known always, instinctively,” he told Floyd Dell, “—that’s how to handle people, make them do as I please, be what I wanted them to be. I was in business for a long time and the truth is I was a smooth son of a bitch.” He never learned to handle words in that smooth fashion. Writing was an activity he assigned to a different level of himself, the one on which he was emotional and unpractical. To reach that level sometimes required a sustained effort of the will. He might start a story like a man running hard to catch a train, but once it was caught he could settle back and let himself be carried—often to the wrong destination.

He knew instinctively whether one of his stories was right or wrong, but he didn’t always know why. He could do what writers call “pencil work” on his manuscript, changing a word here and there, but he couldn’t tighten the plot, delete weak passages, sharpen the dialogue, give a twist to the ending; if he wanted to improve the story, he had to wait for a return of the mood that had produced it, then write it over from beginning to end. There were stories like “Death in the Woods” that he rewrote a dozen times, at intervals of years, before he found what he thought was the right way of telling them. Sometimes, in different books, he published two or three versions of the same story, so that we can see how it grew in his subconscious mind. One characteristic of the subconscious is a defective sense of time: in dreams the old man sees himself as a boy, and the events of thirty or forty years may be jumbled together. Time as a logical succession of events was Anderson’s greatest difficulty in writing novels or even long stories. He got his tenses confused and carried his heroes ten years forward or back in a single paragraph. His instinct was to present everything together, as in a dream.

When giving a lecture on “A Writer’s Conception of Realism,” he spoke of a half-dream that he had “over and over.” “If I have been working intensely,” he said, “I find myself unable to relax when I go to bed. Often I fall into a half-dream state and when I do, the faces of people begin to appear before me. They seem to snap into place before my eyes, stay there, sometimes for a short period, sometimes longer. There are smiling faces, leering ugly faces, tired faces, hopeful faces…. I have a kind of illusion about this matter,” he continued. “It is, no doubt, due to a story-teller’s point of view. I have the feeling that the faces that appear before me thus at night are those of people who want their stories told and whom I have neglected.”

He would have liked to tell the stories of all the faces he had ever seen. He was essentially a story teller, as he kept insisting, but his art was of a special type, belonging to an oral rather than a written tradition. It used to be the fashion to compare him with Chekhov and say that he had learned his art from the Russians. Anderson insisted that, except for Turgenev, he hadn’t read any Russians when the comparisons were being made. Most of his literary masters were English or American: George Borrow, Walt Whitman, Mark Twain (more than he admitted), and Gertrude Stein. D. H. Lawrence was a less fortunate influence, but only on his later work. His earliest and perhaps his principal teacher was his father, “Irve” Anderson, who used to entertain whole barrooms with tales of his impossible adventures in the Civil War. A great many of the son’s best stories, too, were told first in saloons. Later he would become what he called “an almighty scribbler” and would travel about the country with dozens of pencils and reams of paper, the tools of his trade. “I am one,” he said, “who loves, like a drunkard his drink, the smell of ink, and the sight of a great pile of white paper that may be scrawled upon always gladdens me”; but his earlier impulse had been to speak, not write, his stories. The best of them retain the language, the pace, and one might even say the gestures of a man talking unhurriedly to his friends.

Within the oral tradition, Anderson had his own picture of what a story should be. He was not interested in telling conventional folk tales, those in which events are more important than emotions. American folk tales usually end with a “snapper”—that is, after starting with the plausible, they progress through the barely possible to the flatly incredible, then wait for a laugh. Magazine fiction used to follow—and much of it still does—a pattern leading to a different sort of snapper, one that calls for a gasp of surprise or relief instead of a guffaw. Anderson broke the pattern by writing stories that not only lacked snappers, in most cases, but even had no plots in the usual sense. The tales he told in his Midwestern drawl were not incidents or episodes, they were moments, each complete in itself.

The best of the moments in Winesburg, Ohio is called “The Untold Lie.” The story, which I have to summarize at the risk of spoiling it, is about two farm hands husking corn in a field at dusk. Ray Pearson is small, serious, and middle-aged, the father of half a dozen thin-legged children; Hal Winters is big and young, with the reputation of being a bad one. Suddenly he says to the older man, “I’ve got Nell Gunther in trouble. I’m telling you, but keep your mouth shut.” He puts his two hands on Ray’s shoulders and looks down into his eyes. “Well, old daddy,” he says, “come on, advise me. Perhaps you’ve been in the same fix yourself. I know what everyone would say is the right thing to do, but what do you say?” Then the author steps back to look at his characters. “There they stood,” he tells us, “in the big empty field with the quiet corn shocks standing in rows behind them and the red and yellow hills in the distance, and from being just two indifferent workmen thay had become all alive to each other.”

That single moment of aliveness—that epiphany, as Joyce would have called it, that sudden reaching out of two characters through walls of inarticulateness and misunderstanding—is the effect that Anderson is trying to create for his readers or listeners. There is more to the story, of course, but it is chiefly designed to bring the moment into relief. Ray Pearson thinks of his own marriage, to a girl he got into trouble, and turns away from Hal without being able to say the expected words about duty. Later that evening he is seized by a sudden impulse to warn the younger man against being tricked into bondage. He runs awkwardly across the fields, crying out that children are only the accidents of life. Then he meets Hal and stops, unable to repeat the words that he had shouted into the wind. It is Hal who breaks the silence. “I’ve already made up my mind,” he says, taking Ray by the coat and shaking him. “Nell ain’t no fool…. I want to marry her. I want to settle down and have kids.” Both men laugh, as if they had forgotten what happened in the cornfield. Ray walks away into the darkness, thinking pleasantly now of his children and muttering to himself, “It’s just as well. Whatever I told him would have been a lie.” There has been a moment in the lives of two men. The moment has passed and the briefly established communion has been broken, yet we feel that each man has revealed his essential being. It is as if a gulf had opened in the level Ohio cornfield and as if, for one moment, a light had shone from the depths, illuminating everything that happened or would ever happen to both of them.

That moment of revelation was the story Anderson told over and over, but without exhausting its freshness, for the story had as many variations as there were faces in his dreams. Behind one face was a moment of defiance; behind another, a moment of resignation (as when Alice Hindman forces herself “to face bravely the fact that many people must live and die alone, even in Winesburg”); behind a third face was a moment of self-discovery; behind a fourth was a moment of deliberate self-delusion. This fourth might have been the face of the author’s sister, as he describes her in a chapter of Sherwood Anderson’s Memoirs. Unlike the other girls she had no beau, and so she went walking with her brother Sherwood, pretending that he was someone else. “It’s beautiful, isn’t it, James?” she said, looking at the wind ripples that passed in the moonlight over a field of ripening wheat. Then she kissed him and whispered, “Do you love me, James?”—and all her loneliness and flight from reality were summed up in those words. Anderson had that gift for summing up, for pouring a lifetime into a moment.

There must have been many such moments of truth in his own life, and there was one in particular that has become an American legend. After serving as a volunteer in the Spanish-American War; after supplementing his one year in high school with a much later year at Wittenberg Academy; and after becoming a locally famous copywriter in a Chicago advertising agency, Anderson had launched into business for himself; by the age of thirty-six he had been for some years t...

Biographie de l'auteur :

Born in 1876, Sherwood Anderson grew up in a small town in Ohio—an experience that was the basis of his greatest achievements as a writer. He served in the Spanish-American War, worked as an advertising man, and managed an Ohio paint factory before abandoning both job and family to embark on a literary career in Chicago. His first novel, Windy McPherson's Son, was published in 1916; his second, Marching Men, a characteristic study of the individual in conflict with industrial society, appeared in 1917. But it is Winesburg, Ohio (1919), with its disillusioned view of small-town lives, that is generally considered his masterpiece. Later novels— Poor White, Many Marriages, and Dark Laughter—continued to depict the spiritual poverty of the machine age. Anderson died in 1941.

Malcolm Cowley (1898–1989) a leadiing literary figure of his time, wrote numerous books of literary criticism, essays, and poetry.

Les informations fournies dans la section « A propos du livre » peuvent faire référence à une autre édition de ce titre.

Meilleurs résultats de recherche sur AbeBooks

1.

Sherwood Anderson
ISBN 10 : 0140186557 ISBN 13 : 9780140186550
Neuf(s) Quantité : > 20
Vendeur
BWB
(Valley Stream, NY, Etats-Unis)
Evaluation vendeur
[?]

Description du livre État : New. Depending on your location, this item may ship from the US or UK. N° de réf. du libraire 97801401865500000000

Plus d'informations sur ce vendeur | Poser une question au libraire

Acheter neuf
EUR 6,55
Autre devise

Ajouter au panier

Frais de port : Gratuit
Vers Etats-Unis
Destinations, frais et délais

2.

Sherwood Anderson
Edité par Penguin Books Ltd, United Kingdom (1992)
ISBN 10 : 0140186557 ISBN 13 : 9780140186550
Neuf(s) Paperback Quantité : 10
Vendeur
The Book Depository
(London, Royaume-Uni)
Evaluation vendeur
[?]

Description du livre Penguin Books Ltd, United Kingdom, 1992. Paperback. État : New. Reissue. 193 x 127 mm. Language: English . Brand New Book. Anderson profoundly changed the American short story, transforming it from light, popular entertainment into literature of the highest quality. His art belonged as much to an oral as a written tradition, and, as this collection shows, the best of his stories echo the language and the pace of a man talking to his friends. They explore with penetrating compassion the isolation of the individual and capture the emotional undercurrents hidden beneath ordinary events. N° de réf. du libraire ABZ9780140186550

Plus d'informations sur ce vendeur | Poser une question au libraire

Acheter neuf
EUR 8,18
Autre devise

Ajouter au panier

Frais de port : Gratuit
De Royaume-Uni vers Etats-Unis
Destinations, frais et délais

3.

Sherwood Anderson
Edité par Penguin Books Ltd, United Kingdom (1992)
ISBN 10 : 0140186557 ISBN 13 : 9780140186550
Neuf(s) Paperback Quantité : 10
Vendeur
The Book Depository US
(London, Royaume-Uni)
Evaluation vendeur
[?]

Description du livre Penguin Books Ltd, United Kingdom, 1992. Paperback. État : New. Reissue. 193 x 127 mm. Language: English . Brand New Book. Anderson profoundly changed the American short story, transforming it from light, popular entertainment into literature of the highest quality. His art belonged as much to an oral as a written tradition, and, as this collection shows, the best of his stories echo the language and the pace of a man talking to his friends. They explore with penetrating compassion the isolation of the individual and capture the emotional undercurrents hidden beneath ordinary events. N° de réf. du libraire ABZ9780140186550

Plus d'informations sur ce vendeur | Poser une question au libraire

Acheter neuf
EUR 8,19
Autre devise

Ajouter au panier

Frais de port : Gratuit
De Royaume-Uni vers Etats-Unis
Destinations, frais et délais

4.

Anderson, Sherwood (Author); Cowley, Malcolm (Introduction by)
Edité par Penguin Random House
ISBN 10 : 0140186557 ISBN 13 : 9780140186550
Neuf(s) Quantité : > 20
Vendeur
INDOO
(Avenel, NJ, Etats-Unis)
Evaluation vendeur
[?]

Description du livre Penguin Random House. État : New. Brand New. N° de réf. du libraire 0140186557

Plus d'informations sur ce vendeur | Poser une question au libraire

Acheter neuf
EUR 5,54
Autre devise

Ajouter au panier

Frais de port : EUR 3,24
Vers Etats-Unis
Destinations, frais et délais

5.

Sherwood Anderson
Edité par Penguin Books Ltd (1992)
ISBN 10 : 0140186557 ISBN 13 : 9780140186550
Neuf(s) Quantité : 6
Vendeur
PBShop
(Wood Dale, IL, Etats-Unis)
Evaluation vendeur
[?]

Description du livre Penguin Books Ltd, 1992. PAP. État : New. New Book.Shipped from US within 10 to 14 business days. Established seller since 2000. N° de réf. du libraire IB-9780140186550

Plus d'informations sur ce vendeur | Poser une question au libraire

Acheter neuf
EUR 5,10
Autre devise

Ajouter au panier

Frais de port : EUR 3,69
Vers Etats-Unis
Destinations, frais et délais

6.

Anderson, Sherwood
ISBN 10 : 0140186557 ISBN 13 : 9780140186550
Neuf(s) Paperback Quantité : 2
Vendeur
BargainBookStores
(Grand Rapids, MI, Etats-Unis)
Evaluation vendeur
[?]

Description du livre Paperback. État : New. N° de réf. du libraire 949508

Plus d'informations sur ce vendeur | Poser une question au libraire

Acheter neuf
EUR 5,57
Autre devise

Ajouter au panier

Frais de port : EUR 3,69
Vers Etats-Unis
Destinations, frais et délais

7.

Anderson, Sherwood
Edité par Penguin Classics (1992)
ISBN 10 : 0140186557 ISBN 13 : 9780140186550
Neuf(s) Paperback Quantité : 6
Vendeur
Murray Media
(North Miami Beach, FL, Etats-Unis)
Evaluation vendeur
[?]

Description du livre Penguin Classics, 1992. Paperback. État : New. N° de réf. du libraire 0140186557

Plus d'informations sur ce vendeur | Poser une question au libraire

Acheter neuf
EUR 6,90
Autre devise

Ajouter au panier

Frais de port : EUR 2,77
Vers Etats-Unis
Destinations, frais et délais

8.

Anderson, Sherwood
Edité par Penguin Classics
ISBN 10 : 0140186557 ISBN 13 : 9780140186550
Neuf(s) PAPERBACK Quantité : > 20
Vendeur
Mediaoutlet12345
(Springfield, VA, Etats-Unis)
Evaluation vendeur
[?]

Description du livre Penguin Classics. PAPERBACK. État : New. 0140186557 *BRAND NEW* Ships Same Day or Next!. N° de réf. du libraire SWATI2122107585

Plus d'informations sur ce vendeur | Poser une question au libraire

Acheter neuf
EUR 6
Autre devise

Ajouter au panier

Frais de port : EUR 3,69
Vers Etats-Unis
Destinations, frais et délais

9.

Sherwood Anderson
ISBN 10 : 0140186557 ISBN 13 : 9780140186550
Neuf(s) Paperback Quantité : 1
Vendeur
Grand Eagle Retail
(Wilmington, DE, Etats-Unis)
Evaluation vendeur
[?]

Description du livre 2002. Paperback. État : New. 128mm x 12mm x 196mm. Paperback. Anderson profoundly changed the American short story, transforming it from light, popular entertainment into literature of the highest quality. His art belonged as much to an oral as a wr.Shipping may be from multiple locations in the US or from the UK, depending on stock availability. 256 pages. 0.177. N° de réf. du libraire 9780140186550

Plus d'informations sur ce vendeur | Poser une question au libraire

Acheter neuf
EUR 10,07
Autre devise

Ajouter au panier

Frais de port : Gratuit
Vers Etats-Unis
Destinations, frais et délais

10.

Anderson, Sherwood
Edité par Penguin Classics
ISBN 10 : 0140186557 ISBN 13 : 9780140186550
Neuf(s) PAPERBACK Quantité : 6
Vendeur
Movie Mars
(Indian Trail, NC, Etats-Unis)
Evaluation vendeur
[?]

Description du livre Penguin Classics. PAPERBACK. État : New. 0140186557 Brand New Book. Ships from the United States. 30 Day Satisfaction Guarantee!. N° de réf. du libraire 4180806

Plus d'informations sur ce vendeur | Poser une question au libraire

Acheter neuf
EUR 6,54
Autre devise

Ajouter au panier

Frais de port : EUR 3,69
Vers Etats-Unis
Destinations, frais et délais

autres exemplaires de ce livre sont disponibles

Afficher tous les résultats pour ce livre