Andrew Fuhrmann reviews 'A Long Saturday: Conversations' by George Steiner and Laure Adler

In the late 1950s, when he was a fellow at the Princeton Institute for Advanced Learning, George Steiner overheard the legendary J. Robert Oppenheimer, at that time head of the Institute, dressing down a young physicist outside his door: ‘You are so young,’ boomed the father of the atomic bomb, ‘and you have already done so little!’  The story appears most recently in A Long Saturday, a series of conversations between Steiner and the French journalist and biographer Laure Adler, but it is one he has told several times before as a kind of apology for his own unflagging industry as an educator, critic, essayist, and novelist. ‘After comments like that,’ he reflects, ‘you could only hang yourself.’

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Published in December 2017, no. 397

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