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Reprint, Winter 1980

ISSUE:  Winter 1980

The late Richard Hofstadter’s collection of essays on the role of the right wing in our national life, The Paranoid Style In American Politics and Other Essays, was acclaimed by his fellow historian C. Vann Woodward as “the most balanced and authoritative analysis we have of a formidable and apparently permanent force in American politics.” As that force prepares to join the fray of the 1980 campaign, Chicago has made available a new paperback edition of Hofstadter’s work in its Phoenix Book series [$5.95], If the right wing has become a permanent part of our politics, the quest for equality has long been a part of our history, and that quest is the subject of noted British historian J.R. Pole’s The Pursuit of Equality in American History, which California recently reissued [$5.95 paper, $16.95 cloth]. Shortly after its initial publication, Pole’s study was deemed as “a brilliant interpretation of transforming ideas” by the American Historical Review and as “a courageous assault on a central theme of American history” by The Economist. Illinois is offering a paperback edition of Dallin H. Oaks and Marvin S. Hill’s Carthage Conspiracy: The Trial of the Accused Assassins of Joseph Smith [$3.95], an account of the Mormon prophet Joseph Smith, his brother Hyrum, and their alleged assassins which won the Mormon History Association Award. One of the few remaining American practitioners of the elegant yet rambling essay is Edward Hoagland, and a collection of 21 such essays, all taken from three earlier Hoagland volumes, has been selected by Geoffrey Wolff and published in paperback by Vintage as The Edward Hoagland Reader [$4.95]. Two recent reprints involving American medicine have been published, respectively, by Illinois and Yale. Illinois has brought out a paperback edition of John Duffy’s The Healers: A History of American Medicine [$5.95]; Yale’s offering is Mary Roth Walsh’s “Doctors Wanted, No Women Need Apply”: Sexual Barriers in the Medical Profession, 1835—1975 [$5.95 paper, $16.00 cloth]. Southern history and society are the subjects of three books now out in new editions from LSU Press. They are, respectively: John Hope Franklin’s A Southern Odyssey: Travelers in the Antebellum North [$6.95 paper, $14.95 cloth], George Brown Tindall’s The Ethnic Southerners [$5.95 paper, $11.95 cloth], and Daniel R. Hundley’s 1860 discussion of Social Relations in Our Southern States, edited, with an introduction, by William L. Cooper, Jr. [$5.95 paper, $20.00 cloth]. Stephen Brill’s in-depth examination of The Teamsters is a recent Pocket Book [$2.75], as are British journalist Henry Fairlie’s The Parties: Republicans and Democrats in This Century [$2.25] and Eliot Asinof’s Eight Men Out: The Black Sox and the 1919 World Series [$2.50].


Working under the eminent Princeton scholar, Carlos Baker, an undergraduate student named A. Scott Berg decided a few years ago to write his senior thesis on legendary Scribner’s editor Maxwell Perkins. The finished result became a critically acclaimed, definitive biography, Max Perkins: Editor of Genius, which Dutton published in 1978 and which is now out as a Pocket Book [$2.95]. Berg’s biography was praised by Publishers Weekly as being “rich in literary anecdotes. . .a mine of advice for writers and editors.” Two of Perkins’ most prominent writers were Ernest Hemingway and F. Scott Fitzgerald, who were also quite prominent among the “lost generation” of Americans in the fabled Paris of the 1920’s. That Paris is vividly recounted by their fellow expatriate, Caresse Crobsy, a native New Yorker whose autobiography, The Passionate Years, has been republished by the Ecco Press in its paperback series, “Neglected Books of the 20th Century” [$6.95]. As Paris was paradise for Hemingway et al., so Spain became the passion of English expatriate Gerald Brenan, whose two-volume autobiography has been reprinted in paperback by Cambridge. The first volume, A Life of One’s Own: Childhood and youth [$6.95], records Brenan’s childhood, adolescence, and early manhood, concluding with his emigration to Spain at age 25. Volume 2, Personal Record, 1920—1972 [$7.95], recounts the event-filled life of an author whose works include South from Granada and The Spanish Labyrinth. World War II is the subject of two recent paperbacks. The first, a Bantam Book, is Gen. James M. Gavin’s On to Berlin [$2.95], the saga of the 82nd Airborne Division which Gavin led from the skies of Sicily through the bloody Bulge to meet the Russians in the crumbling capital of the Third Reich. The second, published by Oxford, is Keith Douglas’s Alamein to Zem Zem [$6.95], an account of the desert war by a young 8th Army officer and promising poet who later was killed near the Normandy beaches three days after D-Day. The new edition is edited, with an introduction, by Desmond Graham. Oxford has also issued a second handsome, hard-back edition of Jane Austen’s Letters [$43.50], collected and edited by R.W. Chapman. Of the letters, Chapman wrote: “Read with attention they yield a picture of the upper class of that time which is surely without a rival.”


Soviet literature is the subject of two new Cambridge paperbacks. Vera S. Dunham’s In Stalin’s Time: Middle-class Values in Soviet Fiction [$7.95] examines the role literature played in Soviet society between the end of World War II and Stalin’s death, while Deming Brown’s Soviet Russian Literature Since Stalin [$7.95] describes the main trends in Russian prose and poetry since Stalin. Cambridge has also published a paperback edition of C.S. Lewis’s Selected Literary Essays [$8.95], edited by Walker Hooper and ranging in topic from “The Vision of John Bunyan” to “Psycho-Analysis and Literary Criticism.” Macmillan has a paperback edition of Louis Simpson’s A Revolution in Taste: Studies of Dylan Thomas, Allen Ginsberg, Sylvia Plath, and Robert Lowell [$4.95]. Ecco Press is offering a paperback edition of Polish poet Czeslaw Milosz’s Bells in Winter, a collection of poems translated by the author and Lillian Vallee [$3.95]. Liveright has issued new editions of two collections of poems by E.E. Cummings, namely W (Viva) [$3.95 paper, $9.95 cloth], first published in 1931, and XAIPE [also $3.95 paper, $9.95 cloth], which first appeared in 1950. Each volume is edited, with an afterword, by George James Firmage.


When first published in this country, Emmanuel LeRoy Ladurie’s Montaillou: The Promised Land of Error was hailed by one critic as “a new classic in both history and anthropology.” Translated by Barbara Bray, this study of an early 14th-century village in southern France is now available as a Vintage Book [$4.95]. A study of a far different society, Richard Grunberger’s The 12-Year Reich: A Social History of Nazi Germany, 1933—1945 has been reprinted in paperback by Holt, Rinehart & Winston [$7.95]. Two recent paperbacks are both concerned with the Renaissance, one being Wayne Shumaker’s The Occult Sciences in the Renaissance: A Study in Intellectual Patterns [California $6.95] and the other John Pope-Hennessy’s The Portrait in the Renaissance [Princeton/Bollingen Paperbacks $9.95], A collection of columns by Potomac pundit George F. Wills, The Pursuit of Happiness and Other Sobering Thoughts, has been reissued in paper-back by Harper Colophon Books [$4.95]. Cambridge has published a paperback edition of W.B. Gallic’s Philosophers of Peace and War: Kant, Clausewitz, Marx, Engels and Tolstoy [$5.95]. Vintage Books has reprinted Calvin Trillin’s Alice, Let’s Eat: Further Adventures of a Happy Eater [$1.95] and Dr. Lucien Israël’s Conquering Cancer [$2.95].


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