THAT few of the New Yorker’s “Twenty Under Forty” are known to literary people, far less to the general public, shows the extent to which literature has become marginalized in American culture, pushed into a smaller and smaller corner. Every decade the condition deteriorates. The trendline is clear. Yet establishment promoters insist that “All is well.”
THINK that once such a list could’ve consisted of the names Fitzgerald, Hemingway, Faulkner, Wolfe, DosPassos, Steinbeck, Porter, among others, and you realize the extent of the drop off.