The Birth of Death and Other Comedies

The Novels of Russell H. Greenan
Scholarly Series
Tom Whalen

Russell H. Greenan’s It Happened in Boston? is one of the most radical narratives to appear in the late 1960s (“this is a book that encompasses everything” as David L. Ulin noted in Bookforum). Yet due in large part to the difficulty of classifying Greenan’s fiction, many readers are unaware of his other novels. In The Birth of Death and Other Comedies: The Novels of Russell H. Greenan, Tom Whalen, drawing widely from the American literary tradition, locates Greenan’s lineage in the work of Hawthorne and Poe “where allegory and dream mingle with and illuminate realism,” as well as in the fiction of Twain, West, Hammett, Cain, and Thompson. Examining Greenan’s characteristic themes and strategies, Whalen provides perceptive readings of the dark comedies of this criminally neglected American master, and in a coda reflects on Greenan’s career and the reception of his work.

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Publication: Scholarly Series
Format: Paperback / softback
Number of pages: 200
ISBN-13: 9781564786401
GTIN13: 9781564786401
Publication date: 6/1/2011
Language: eng
List price: $23.95