PANOPLIES: Good Grounds

Last week the Swedish Academy bestowed the Nobel Prize for Literature on André Gide, dean of French letters (The Counterfeiters; If It Die). In his 78 years Gide has, at various times, defended Communism, homosexuality, and "pure" Christianity divested of Pauline glosses. Most of all he has defended individualism.

Of four final candidates for the Prize, Gide had been longest on the Academy's list. Runners-up: Benedetto Croce (81), Italian historian, philosopher and estheticist; T. S. Eliot (59), Anglo-Catholic poet and critic, who, unlike Gide, is an exponent of traditionalism; and François Mauriac (62), French novelist.

Gide's individualism led him to reject...

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