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Tag: Michael Dirda


The Most Dangerous Book

This “biography of a book” presents James Joyce’s “Ulysses” as the work that broke the crusading spirit of the U.S. government’s literary censorship during the early 20th century.

Posted on Jun 27, 2014 READ MORE


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No Humbug Here

This year, try reading instead of watching “A Christmas Carol,” and pay attention to its apolitical, even reactionary views on social change. There’s more to this Dickens classic than Alastair Sims and the Muppets.

Posted on Dec 27, 2013 READ MORE



Sincerely, Sam Beckett

“I keep an eye on the love life of the Colorado beetle and work against it,” Samuel Beckett writes in this second volume of his collected letters. “… That is to say by throwing the parents into my neighbor’s garden and burning the eggs. If only someone had done that for me!”

Posted on Oct 28, 2011 READ MORE



Mencken, a Curmudgeon for the Ages

There can’t be many newspapermen whose work bears rereading after more than 80 years, but Mencken is one. The six volumes of his collected “Prejudices” are cocksure about everything, but whether they are right or boneheaded, one hardly cares.

Posted on Dec 10, 2010 READ MORE


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