Caught Dept.


J.D. Salinger, aged 91.

Most famed for Catcher in the Rye, of course. I don't know if he ever knew about Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex or how his work was used as a tertiary influence on the plot. But given his absolute rejection of just about anything the outside world offered him with his name on it, I'm pretty sure he would have been at best indifferent to it. (It's not as if he offered up anything to say about Mark David Chapman, either.)

I remember reading a review of a number of Salinger's later works, penned by the literary critic Stanley Edgar Hyman; I'd been introduced to Hyman's work by way of research on e.e.cummings, and he'd also provided an affectionate afterword for many editions of Anthony Burgess's A Clockwork Orange. (He didn't think much of James Purdy, though.)

Hyman was dismayed with the way the literary highway Salinger had been traveling on had turned into a country road and then a squirrel track that disappeared up into a tree. "He should come back down and go about his business," he rather curtly recommended. I, reading the review some decades later, knew all too well that nothing of the kind had ever happened.


Tags: books Ghost in the Shell J.D. Salinger links obituary writing




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