Thomas Wolfe American Literature Analysis
Typically, Wolfe composed his novels as vast, sprawling narratives which, beginning with the origins, early childhood, or youth of his protagonists, would recount in abundant detail memorable impressions and episodes from his past. Those who knew Wolfe personally and who had heard him speak described him as capable of extraordinary, vivid, and tumultuous outpourings of words that could be prompted spontaneously by suitable occasions. This quality may be seen in much of his writing. Many of the particularly evocative passages in his novels display descriptive powers that he developed at some length, and which in turn were related to the thematic currents underlying his works. His writings were particularly effective in conveying sights and sounds of locales that were familiar to him. Inner reactions and the subjective life of his fictional alter egos were also depicted in depth.
Resonant and seemingly universal in their appeal were Wolfe’s evocations of the timeless joys and travails of childhood and youth and the many-faceted manifestations of the American spirit. He also had a definite sense for the specific characteristics of certain regions and groups; in some passages he would contrast southern ways with those that prevailed in other parts of the United States. Often he would indulge in written mimicry of dialects, whether southern or northeastern, and sometimes he attempted to reproduce the intonations of English spoken with an Italian, French, or...
(The entire section is 5197 words.)
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