Books: The Fabulous Imp

THE WORLD OF GEORGE JEAN NATHAN (389 pp.)—Edited by Charles Angoff—Knopf ($5).

Critic George Jean Nathan was once told that an angry theatrical producer had called him a pinhead. "That is on the face of it absurd," retorted Nathan. " Tin-head' is a two-syllable word." The dean of U.S. drama critics has been nipping his lip at the American theater and the people in it for 46 seasons. He has outlasted the combined Broadway runs of Abie's Irish Rose, Tobacco Road and Oklahoma!—and in continuous performance. Plays have to ring down the curtain around 11 p.m.; Nathan never does.

Nobody knows exactly how...

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