Books: Wickedness and Wonders

THE COLLECTED STORIES by Isaac Bashevis Singer Farrar, Straus & Giroux; 610 pages; $19.95

A hallmark of literary modernism is the notion that readers must earn their places at the feet of the masters. Serious art requires extended initiations; Finnegans Wake is not for the fainthearted, nor will Proust reward the impatient. Isaac Bashevis Singer, 77, began writing at about the time that this avant-garde assumption was hardening into orthodoxy, and somehow he never got the message. He went on with his work under the illusion that authors were still required to prove...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!