Books: Immoral Moralist

THE JOURNALS OF ANDRÉE GIDE VOL. II, 1914-1927 (462 pp.)—Translated and annotated by Justin O'Brien—Knopf ($6).

One day in 1881 a Paris schoolboy "fell convulsively sobbing into mamma's arms" and cried: "I'm not like other people . . . not like other people!" Andre Gide, at eleven, had found his career.

Gide's difference from other people extends to his extraordinary clothes, his inconsistencies (he has professed to be both an atheist and a Christian), his admitted homosexuality and a superbly polished literary style that makes most other contemporary prose seem sloppy. Gide has...

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