[PDF] ✓ The Middle of the Journey | by ↠ Lionel Trilling Monroe Engel

The Middle of the Journey By Lionel Trilling Monroe Engel,

  • Title: The Middle of the Journey
  • Author: Lionel Trilling Monroe Engel
  • ISBN: 9781590170151
  • Page: 256
  • Format: Paperback
  • Published in 1947, as the cold war was heating up, Lionel Trilling s only novel was a prophetic reckoning with the bitter ideological disputes that were to come to a head in the McCarthy era The Middle of the Journey revolves around a political turncoat and the anger his action awakens among a group of intellectuals summering in Connecticut The story, however, is less coPublished in 1947, as the cold war was heating up, Lionel Trilling s only novel was a prophetic reckoning with the bitter ideological disputes that were to come to a head in the McCarthy era The Middle of the Journey revolves around a political turncoat and the anger his action awakens among a group of intellectuals summering in Connecticut The story, however, is less concerned with the rights and wrongs of left and right than with an absence of integrity at the very heart of the debate Certainly the hero, John Laskell, staging a slow recovery from the death of his lover and a near fatal illness of his own, comes to suspect that the conflicts and commitments involved are little than a distraction from the real responsibilities, and terrors, of the common world.A detailed, sometimes slyly humorous, picture of the manners and s of the intelligentsia, as well as a work of surprising tenderness and ultimately tragic import, The Middle of the Journey is a novel of ideas whose quiet resonance has only grown with time This is a deeply troubling examination of America by one of its greatest critics.
    The Middle of the Journey Published in as the cold war was heating up Lionel Trilling s only novel was a prophetic reckoning with the bitter ideological disputes that were to come to a head in the McCarthy era The Middl

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    1. Laskell himself was committed to no party, but he nevertheless faced reality in the busy life of committees He was what was then known by radicals as a sincere liberal p 37 The Middle of the Journey is a novel of ideology and ideas Written in 1947 and set in the years just preceding, it details the lives of several characters, including a protagonist, John Laskell, who is conflicted about his life, his friends radical and otherwise and the ideology that influences them His friend Gifford Maxim h [...]

    2. Trilling s only novel, The Middle of the Journey takes place in New York and Connecticut during the mid 1940s at a time when communism and socialism were widely endorsed by intellectuals and other liberals One of the main characters, Gifford Maxim, is loosely or not so loosely based on Whittaker Chambers, the communist defector who accused Alger Hiss of espionage, thereby prompting one of the most sensational trials in U.S history After repudiating communism, Maxim does an about face in his poli [...]

    3. in the middle of In the Middle of the Journey and loving it Sheepishly admit to having read very little Trilling criticism, but so far very enad of his fiction And what s to hate about a novel with a hero who is an overanalytical 1930s liberal with communist sympathies, raised in LARCHMONT and now living in boho charm in Greenwich Village

    4. This was actually my third attempt over several years I didn t make it through to the end this time either Trilling is a romantic masquerading as a modernist The clerestory windows shut me down.

    5. Please give me a helpful vote at review RF4EPKEI came to this novel after immersing myself in books about the Hiss Chambers case As part of my reading, I discovered that the famous literary critic Lionel Trilling had written a novel that had a character based on Whittaker Chambers I was fascinated by the fact that Chambers was sufficiently well known in literary circles to be the basis of a character in a novel Equally fascinating, this book was written and published before Chambers came to nat [...]

    6. This is a book about politics and the idea of death and how they relate Very, very interesting, and very much relevant to our lives today, because we certainly haven t gotten any comfortable with the idea that 100% of us die than we were seventy years ago It s not a great novel it s not worldview changing like Dostoeveski or life building like Dickens or calmly omnisciently benevloant like Austen, but it s flawless while being hyper aware of itself as a literary creation The characters, action, [...]

    7. Published in 1947 but set, I believe, in the late 1930 s, this novel explores the pull and the many debates among the intelligentsia over the Communist Party One character is based on Whittaker Chambers, who defected from the Party and apparently feared for his life Much of the novel involves the inner thoughts of its main character, a seemingly rather wealthy and well educated man recuperating from scarlet fever The author makes, to me, an unfortunate decision to embody the working class in one [...]

    8. THE MIDDLE OF THE JOURNEY 1947 Lionel Trilling I knew Lionel Trilling only as a literary critic of high repute I ve read short essays by him, but never knew he had written this novel This is one of the most intelligent novels I have ever read It was Trilling s attempt to define the systems of man s beliefs using a vacation in the country as a backdrop We meet our protagonist, John Laskell, as he is boarding a train to take him from New York City to the country home of friends in Connecticut, wh [...]

    9. Trilling s beautiful prose makes this a delightful book to read Atmospheric and dense with subtle details relating to the political crisis of liberal America in the period following revelations about Stalin s Russian, the novel, taking place during a summer vacation in rural Connecticut, is itself a kind of respite from the real world concerns that beset us today Intellectually suffused with a bygone sense of liberal idealism that has been challenged by a shocking sense of corruption one of the [...]

    10. I read this for the first time in 2012 The characters are card board charactures with an afternoon delight thrown in for good measure Anyone reasonably familiar with the profile of anti communism in the U.S and the career of Whitaker Chambers an undergraduate classmate of Trilling s will probably be able to figure out what is going on But for those who cannot, a few chapters of The Conservative Turn, particularly the one specifically on this book, should clarify things Those seriously interested [...]

    11. They don t come any better than this I ll undoubtedly read it again, as there were sections when Gifford Maxim modeled after Whitaker Chambers was expounding on his beliefs and though I read some of the sections twice, I found them difficult to understand The book is notable for it description of the intense inner feelings of practically all the characters, and one finishes the book with the feeling that enough is known about each of them to feel quite at home if one should suddenly have cause t [...]

    12. I was prompted to read Trilling s The Liberal Imagination, and decided instead to start here with what I think is his only novel It was in some ways for me an experience of reading about relatively recent times but still having the feeling of doing so through a time machine Aspects of the characters and the situation seemed very removed while others still held the spark of contemporaneity The portrait of Gifford Maxim is especially interesting, as is the entire scene of the wealthy intellectual [...]

    13. N.Y.R.B.M.F.T New York Review strikes again This is Trilling s only novel and makes you wish he had written On the surface, a story of idealistic New Dealers caught up in nebulous Communist plots in 1937, it is much a subtle rumination on the dark shadow of death and disillusionment in a bright summer idyll Post war talks to pre war Maxim, based on Whittaker Chambers, is an amazing character, a complex portrait of the radical gone conservative Made me understand Wm Buckley much better, no joke [...]

    14. This novel by the famous literary critic and scholar, Lionel Trilling, was, in some ways, a wonderful, Jamesian novel of consciousness within the context of the political turmoil on the left in American politics during the 1930s I loved many parts of the book, but ultimately it felt somewhat bloated Trilling could have used an editor not afraid to pare away some of the narrative chunks, particularly from the scenes of dramatic action and dialogue.

    15. The story works mostly through the central character s perception of what the other characters are thinking This is extremely well done you get a convincing impression of the motivations and reactions of the intellectuals of the time, and of how they react to the main event of the story I don t know to what extent this reflects the historical people that some claim it does, but it is a great study of the mood of the time nevertheless.

    16. The central character, Gifford Maxim, is based on Whitaker Chambers, whom Lionel Trilling knew well If you want to experience the disgusting physical presence of Whitaker Chambers and his disgusting personality, read this book Arthur and Nancy Croom a modern, progressive couple resemble Alger and Priscilla Hiss, but Trilling insists that he did not know them when he wrote the book.

    17. A mixed bag There are occasionally powerful novelistic moments Laskell s relationship to Emily and Susan Caldwell, most notably interrupted by long scenes depicting characters who are hard to credit as real having sometimes vague, often tedious political debates that ham handedly communicate Trilling s views on the corruption of fellow travelling liberals.

    18. Trilling s skilled at making explicit all of the unspoken communication that occurs beneath the surface of the most ordinary social situations Worth a read for the his social insightfulness and perceptiveness Also interesting from a historical political perspective.

    19. Gives you a feeling for how seriously people took themselves in these times Pretty over wrought and leaves me feeling that it all got pretty silly.

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