The Stories of Delmore Schwartz
THERE IS NO DOUBT that Delmore Schwartz’s first book of stories, The World Is a Wedding, was a considerable, though not popular, success. This may have surprised even the author, who was known in 1948, and may have wanted chiefly to be known, as a brilliant young poet. One can easily imagine Mr. Schwartz swept up by a reading of Turgenev or Chekhov or both and “trying his hand” in what seemed to him at the time a casual way at some social history a la russe, oblivious of the reigning vogue for symbols and mythological epiphanies, fairly careless of the unities, or the rule insisted upon by Frank O’Connor that a short story should encompass only one crisis or mood. But somehow a deeper necessity than merely hitting the average highbrow literary taste took hold of Schwartz, and he was faithful to a higher rule than any he flouted: namely, that an ounce of presentation is worth a pound of care; and drew what to my mind is the definitive portrait of the Jewish middle class in New York during the Depression.
About the Author