Tuesday, January 27, 2009

John Updike: In Memorian

I just now read that John Updike died today. Love him or hate him or switch back and forth between the two as most of us seemed to do, it cannot be denied that an American Literary icon has passed. He was one of those guys I just thought would always be around, showing up regularly in Best American Shorts and, of course, The New Yorker.

He was accused of being "too literary" by some and "too commercial" by others. Sometimes he was both of those things, and sometimes he was truly great. Along with John Cheever, he was among the first to chronicle the vicissitudes of the suburban middle class––divorce, infidelity, unemployment, alcoholism. These themes have been done to death now, but the initiator always deserves more credit than the copiers.

We've been through a lot with Rabbit. Sorry to see him go.

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