A REWARDING LITERATURE: ON AMERICANNESS

Along with a special issue on American literature, the London Times Literary Supplement last week paid the U.S. a handsome compliment. "Nowhere," it announced, "in the modern world is there a more rewarding literature than that which America has to offer." But in its ensuing lengthy analysis, the Times also had some sharp observations—and a few reservations—about U.S. culture and character in general. Among them:

WITH Hawthorne the exploration of Americanness, as something mysteriously different from any other national quality, is well under way . . . Its existence conditions the whole of American literature . . . The Englishman...

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