Wednesday, September 21, 2005


Elizabeth Hardwick on NYC

From "Mrs. Wharton in New York," reprinted in Sight-Readings: American Fictions:
New York, with its statistical sensationalism, is a shallow vessel for memory since it lives in a continuous present, making it difficult to recall the shape of the loss deplored, whether it be the gray tin of the newsstand or the narrow closet for the neighborhood's dry cleaning, there and gone over a vacation. As for people, the rapid obsolescence of deities makes its point each season; or, if surviving the gleeful erasure of fame, the penalties pursuing society's accomodation can be severe, or so it is often asserted by the fatigued famous.

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