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Critic In Love

A Romantic Biography of Edmund Wilson

List Price: $16.95

May 8, 2007 | Paperback | 5.5 x 9, 240 Pages | ISBN 9781593761530
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"[A] spirited, chatty look at [Wilson's] relationships with the opposite sex." —Publishers Weekly

For half a century, Edmund Wilson played a major role in American letters. He also often acted as the playboy of its cultural and literary elite: Poet Edna St. Vincent Millay, actress Mary Blair, writer Mary McCarthy, poet Léonie Adams, and journalist and screenwriter Penelope Gilliatt were among his numerous dalliances. Add Dorothy Parker, Louise Bogan, and Elinor Wylie as his drinking buddies, and it’s easy to see why authors David Castronovo and Janet Groth turned a curious eye to the portly critic and his unlikely romantic successes. Each woman he came to know posed an alluring interpretive problem, an erotic or analytic challenge, a presence that fired his imagination. In the able hands of Castronovo and Groth, Wilson’s Rabelaisian passions, ardors, and vulnerabilities—complicated by his ideas about love, sex, and marriage—become the ingredients of a story quite singular in modern American culture.

DAVID CASTRONOVO has authored nine books, including Edmund Wilson, a New York Times Notable Book. He lives in New York City where he is currently a professor of English at Pace University.

JANET GROTH is professor emerita at SUNY Plattsburgh and the author of Edmund Wilson: A Critic for Our Time. A former Fulbright lecturer in Norway and visiting fellow at Yale, she now lives in New York City.


“The coauthors’ deep familiarity with their subject (they’ve written biographies of Wilson and edited his letters) serves them well in this spirited, chatty look at his relationships with the opposite sex.” —Publishers Weekly

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