E. B. White

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What is E. B. White's central argument on the writer's role and responsibility in his Paris Review interview?

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In E. B. White's Paris Review interview on the responsibility and role of the writer, he makes an argument that a writer should be socially engaged. He dances around this concept of authorship by beginning several statements with "A writer should. . . ."

Many of the ideas he has on authorship revolve around a symbiotic relationship between the written piece and the world around it; however, I think there is one sentence that could be understood to be the thesis:

The writer's role is what it has always been: he is a custodian, a secretary. Science and technology have perhaps deepened his responsibility but not changed it.

White believes that writers have a tie to the muck around them but have a duty to lift people up out of the muck rather than highlight its existence. He feels that it is a writer's duty to shape an event or problem with a viable way out.

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