Updike in Cincinnati: A Literary Performance

Overview

“I had a great time in Cincinnati; but why is there no shrine to Doris Day?”
—John Updike

In the wake of race riots and an airline strike, John Updike came to the University of Cincinnati in April 2001 as an honored guest. Over two spring days, he engaged and charmed his audiences, reading from his fiction, fielding questions, sitting for an interview, participating in a panel discussion, and touring ...

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Overview

“I had a great time in Cincinnati; but why is there no shrine to Doris Day?”
—John Updike

In the wake of race riots and an airline strike, John Updike came to the University of Cincinnati in April 2001 as an honored guest. Over two spring days, he engaged and charmed his audiences, reading from his fiction, fielding questions, sitting for an interview, participating in a panel discussion, and touring Cincinnati.

Successful writers typically spend a portion of their non-writing lives traveling the country to give readings and lectures. While a significant experience for author and audience alike, this public spectacle, once covered in detailed newspaper accounts, now is barely noticed by the media. Updike in Cincinnati—composed of a wealth of materials, including session transcripts, short fiction read and discussed by the author, photographs, and anecdotal observations about Updike’s behavior in the Queen City—is unique in comprehensively documenting a literary visit by a major American author.

Updike’s verbal eloquence, intelligence, improvisational skills, and gift for comedy are displayed in full vigor. With natural grace, the author discusses a range of topics, including his own work, his mother and his oldest son as writers, Pete Rose and Shoeless Joe Jackson, the Nobel Prize, his appearance on The Simpsons, the divine right of kings and Ottoman sultans, and Hamlet. Updike in Cincinnati portrays one of America’s literary giants as an adept and talented public performer.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780821417485
  • Publisher: Ohio University Press
  • Publication date: 5/29/2007
  • Pages: 176
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 8.50 (h) x 0.70 (d)

Table of Contents


Acknowledgments     ix
Introduction: The Writer in Public     xi
Letter to Be Included as an Afterword to the Introduction   John Updike     xxxi
Zimmer Auditorium Reading     1
Elliston Room Panel: Updike, His Critics, and His Short Fiction     33
A Conversation at the College Conservatory of Music     71
Mercantile Library Reading     104
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