The Geniusby THEODORE DREISER
Thoroughly immersed in the turn-of-the-century art scene, The Genius explores the multiple conflicts between art and business, art and marriage, and between traditional and modern views of sexual morality. Despite heavy editing, The Genius was deemed so shocking that its
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Thoroughly immersed in the turn-of-the-century art scene, The Genius explores the multiple conflicts between art and business, art and marriage, and between traditional and modern views of sexual morality. Despite heavy editing, The Genius was deemed so shocking that its sale was immediately prohibited by the New York Society for the Suppression of Vice. It was not released until 1923, and thereafter the episode confirmed Dreiser's status as a writer ahead of his time.
"The Genius is one of the most overlooked and underrated of Dreiser's novels, yet it is arguably the key book for students of the writer, offering abundant materials for an understanding of the tensions between art and business and between romance and realism. It is also one of the finest portraits of marriage--and of the passions of marital frustration--in all of literature, as well as an exploration of the supposed sexual privileges of genius. Clare Eby's presentation of this earlier and previously unpublished Genius is a triumph of textual and interpretive scholarship, offering in its accompanying essays and apparatus a meticulous consideration of the similarities and differences between the two texts as well as copious explanatory notes. A great addition to Dreiser scholarship, this original version reminds us again of the fascinating evolution of Dreiser's powerful imagination."--Miles Orvell, author of The Real Thing: Imitation and Authenticity in American Culture
Theodore Herman Albert Dreiser was an American novelist and journalist. He pioneered the naturalist school and is known for portraying characters whose value lies not in their moral code, but in their persistence against all obstacles, and literary situations that more closely resemble studies of nature than tales of choice and agency.
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