Books: Misanthrope

THE COLLECTED STORIES OF KATHERINE ANNE PORTER. 495 pages. Harcourt, Brace & World. $5.95.

Katherine Anne Porter has consistently been admired for what she is not. Since 1923, when her first story was published, the critics have solemnly compared her to Chekhov, Turgenev, George Eliot; and since 1962, when Ship of Fools became an international bestseller, the book-club brigade has revered the white-haired lady from Texas as the Grandma Moses of literature. Both judgments are wide of the mark.

An author who in 71 years has published only 27 stories and one novel can scarcely be considered a major writer; and that...

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