[Ads-l] Dictionary Feud: Faulkner vs Hemingway

ADSGarson O'Toole adsgarsonotoole at GMAIL.COM
Wed Jan 27 00:44:37 UTC 2016

Some list members may be interested in quotations that mention
dictionaries. The Quote Investigator website has a new pertinent

The Dictionary Feud: Faulkner versus Hemingway

In April 1947 William Faulkner visited the University of Mississippi
by invitation. He answered questions posed by students in a Creative
Writing class, and his remarks were transcribed. After a multi-year
delay the text was published in the Summer 1951 issue of the quarterly
"The Western Review". When asked to evaluate his own position in the
literary pantheon he made a critical comment about Hemingway.

[ref] 1951 Summer, The Western Review: A Literary Quarterly Published
at the State University of Iowa, Volume 15, Number 4, An Interview
with William Faulkner, Edited by Lavon Rascoe, (Interview was
conducted in April 1947), Start Page 300, Quote Page 304, Published by
the State University of Iowa, Iowa City. (Verified on paper in 1967
reprint from Kraus Reprint Corporation, New York)[/ref]

[Begin excerpt]
Q. If you don't think it too personal, how do you rank yourself with
contemporary writers?

A. 1. Thomas Wolfe: he had much courage and wrote as if he didn't have
long to live; 2. William Faulkner; 3. Dos Passos; 4. Ernest Hemingway:
he has no courage, has never crawled out on a limb. He has never been
known to use a word that might cause the reader to check with a
dictionary to see if it is properly used; 5. John Steinbeck: at one
time I had great hopes for him — now I don't know.
[End excerpt]


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