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RE: THE MALEFACTORS - Catholic Worker odds & ends
September 4th, 2008
02:42 pm


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On May 16, 1956 poet Robert Lowell wrote a letter to novelist J.F. Powers on the subject of Caroline Gordon's novel THE MALEFACTORS, which said in part: "Did you read Caroline Tate's novel about Allen's conversion? An important character is Dorothy Day, sublimated, canonized, the book dedicated her, but made to perform a black mass and on the last page kissed on the mouth by Allen, or rather kissing Allen on the mouth, meaning peace. Dorothy saw the book in page proofs, blew up, and forced the removal of both the black mass and the dedication. The novel is somehow lovely, silly, maddening, and....took nerve to write.---from The Letters of Robert Lowell, Farrar, Straus and Giroux, NY 2005

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Date:August 6th, 2009 01:46 am (UTC)

Flannery O'Connor talks about THE MALEFACTORS

"I have just read Caroline's novel and it's all very fine. She certainly had a hard job to do making those CW people at all believable. The one who is Dorothy Day is a little bodiless and I can't decide if this was intentional or not. She keeps emphasizing that this is a large woman but the effect is different..."---from THE HABIT OF BEING, the Letters of Flannery O'Connor, edited by Sally Fitzgerald, 1988
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