Ed Emmer’s Wolfe essay from BOT is now available as scanned images hosted on my imageserver.
Ed, a fast talking brainslinger of no mean wit, wrote the nine-page stemwinder, a hilarious, withering dismissal of a specific essay that Mr. Tom Wolfe published in Harper’s just as the hardback edition of “The Bonfire of the Vanities” hit shelves.
Here’e how Mr. Wolfe‘s website describes the essay:
In 1989 Wolfe outraged the literacy community with an essay in Harper’s magazine called “Stalking the Billion-footed Beast.” In it he argued that the only hope for the future of the American novel was a Zolaesque naturalism in which the novelist becomes the reporter — as he had done in writing The Bonfire of the Vanities, which was recognized as the essential novel of America in the 1980s.
As Ed warms to his topic, the dismissal becomes broader and ever-more peppered with funny invective. It’s the literary equivalent of watching a friend grow frothy in rantful wroth over a couple glasses of beer.
Ed, as Anne has noted, also sweated his fevered brow in a heroic effort to precisely duplicate the layout of the original essay.