Skip to main content

Louis D. Rubin

Louis D. Rubin, Jr., in his long and distinguished career, has had an immeasurable impact on Southern writing—as novelist, essayist, teacher, and founder of Algonquin Books. His most recent books include the memoirs My Father’s People: A Family of Southern Jews (LSU, 2002) and An Honorable Estate: My Time in the Working Press(LSU, 2001). In 2003 he received the Library of Virginia Lifetime Achievement Award.


TR: On Recent Books about Theodore Roosevelt

Winter 2005 | Criticism

Assuredly our twenty-sixth American president is far from being forgotten. On the contrary, of late there has been positively a resurgence of historical interest in him. Kathleen Dalton's new biography, Theodore Roosevelt: A Strenuous Life (2002), is one of the best of at least a half dozen studies to appear within the past ten years. The year before, Edmund Morris published Theodore Rex (2001), covering TR's White House years, the second volume of what, when completed, seems likely be the definitive three-volume assessment. Louis Auchincloss has written a brief, unremarkable biographical summary, Theodore Roosevelt, in a series entitled American Presidents (2002). H. W. Brands's biography, T.R.: The Last Romantic, appeared in 1997, and The Lion's Pride: Theodore Roosevelt and His Family in Peace and War, by Edward J. Renehan, Jr., in 1998. David McCullough's Mornings on Horseback (1981), an account of TR's younger days, has been reissued with a new introduction (2001). TR plays a commanding role in Warren Zimmerman's First Great Triumph: How Five Americans Made Their Country a World Power (2002) and in James Chace's 1912 (2004).

“You Could Look It Up”

Of the major American spectator sports, the game of baseball is probably the most "intellectual." By this I do not mean that the average baseball fan is a metaphysician or a college professor, since the truth is that as such things go, baseball pro [...]

The Man At the Beach

From the top of the ferris wheel at Folly Beach you could see a long way in all directions, up the beach to where it was woodland along the shore and beyond that the black and white rings of Morris Island lighthouse tower, northward to the flat mar [...]

The Continuing Argument Over Jutland

It can be argued that the greatest mistake made by the Germany of Kaiser Wilhelm II, apart from giving Austria-Hungary the blank check that turned what might have been a localized dispute into a catastrophic world war, was the decision to build a H [...]

H. L. Mencken of the Baltimore Sunpapers

I think that Fred Hobson has provided us, in his excellent biography of H. L. Mencken (Mencken: A Life, 1994), with a very useful insight into the Sage of Baltimore as journalist when he notes, of his immersion in newspaper work that "he would alw [...]

The Left-Handed Glove (A Memory)

In the space of just over five years, from 1930 to 1935, we moved nine times. During that period I lived in seven different neighborhoods and attended five different schools. I remember how it felt to be taken to a new school, escorted to a classro [...]

The Passionate Poet and the Use of Criticism

Like styles of interior decoration and ways of cutting the hair, poetic fashions change. What Thomas Stearns Eliot thought and wrote in the late 1940's and early 1950's, when as a young reader and would-be writer I was making his acquaintance, was [...]

W.J. Cash After Fifty Years

It was in 1941, a full half-century ago, that Alfred A. Knopf published a volume by a North Carolina newspaperman, entitled The Mind of the South. Time has accorded the book by Wilbur Joseph Cash, known as "Jack" to his associates, a kind of class [...]

Thomas Wolfe and the Place He Came From

Thomas Wolfe and the South was the subject of the first essay on Southern literature I published, almost a quarter-century ago. In that essay I went about demonstrating, or attempting to demonstrate, that Wolfe was indubitably a Southern writer, as [...]

Carson McCullers: the Aesthetic of Pain

I think it is not without importance that the all-night restaurant in Carson McCuller's first novel, The Heart is a Lonely Hunter, is called The New York Cafe. In the small-sized Southern city in the late 1930's, when the story takes place, there is [...]