Unlike Hawthorne: A Life (2003), Brenda Wineapple’s penetrating and engaging biography of Nathaniel Hawthorne, Hawthorne’s Habitations, is a work of literary criticism informed by a narrow but fascinating range of biographical details and sources. These details support Robert Milder’s construction of an author ‘divided’ by contradictory drives that remained unresolved in Hawthorne’s fiction and life.
The trials of St Nathaniel
Converting a degraded saint into a typical New Englander
Hawthorne’s Habitations: A Literary Life
by Robert Milder
Oxford University Press, $47.95 hb, 336 pp, 9780199917259
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Shannon Burns is a freelance writer and member of the J.M. Coetzee Centre for Creative Practice. He is a former ABR Patrons' Fellow, and has published short fiction, poetry, and academic articles.
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