Book Notes: "Winesburg, Ohio" by Sherwood Anderson

Winesburg, OhioWinesburg, Ohio by Sherwood Anderson

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I did not know what to think when I began reading Winesburg, Ohio. Hemingway's satire of the novel in The Torrents of Spring had somewhat tainted my first impression of the book. However, on completion I found the book thoughtful, interesting, and, aside from being somewhat vanilla in its description of life in a small American town, insightful. There is a coherence to the various stories that I found in Calvino's Marcolvaldo, despite the work appearing as a collection of short stories based around a protagonist and their relationship to the people, places and happenings in one particular town. I would not be surprised if Calvino was inspired by Anderson. But for the life of me I cannot understand Hemingway's criticism. Yet Anderson had a similar response from Faulkner. I think what makes this work so important is the background story, yet the work speaks to the reader in its own right.

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