Feb 19, 10
Read from February 04 to 19, 2010
** spoiler alert **
Writer's win our approval in a variety of ways.Truman Capote did it by his masterly use of language.His best works are a veritable "how to" on the use of diction.I doubt there are any who had a better grasp of it.It's not only his use of marvelous visual imagery; it's his sense of rhythm too that is nonpareil.It may be interesting to note Truman wrote the words to the classic Bill Evans piano jazz piece,"A Singing Bee." (I'm not positive about the title, but I remember it did swing!)His use of analogy is stunningly unique and unteacheable.
Still, there is something about most of his work that leaves one with an empty feeling; kind of like eating a Chinese meal.I think it has to do with...I don't know... Truman would pick the perfect word..."preciousness" or the like. There is something too rare ...too unique...idiosyncratic... about his writing.A reader gets a sense that his characters are interesting ,if quirky, but somehow unrelated to their own lives.The greatest works have themes that are universal...unbounded by time or locale. Truman's are more than just Southern(and I love Southern1); more than merely frequently Gothic...Southern Grotesque. They are...here's that word again...idiosyncratic. One senses one is reading something written by a very rare (and very precious) precocious child.(Other Voices was written when he was seventeen.)
Some point to the undercurrent of homosexuality in Other Voices... and note it was written in 1948 and therefore very much ahead of its times. I think that's partially true, but even Joel's awakening to his own homosexuality seems to take a secondary position to Truman's stylistic pyrotechnics.
Norman Mailer once said,"Truman Capote is the most perfect writer of (my) generation." I'm not sure he's correct. He certainly was one of the most intereting.