These essays have not appeared in print before; they are fresh, original, critical comments on major American authors. Most of the essays are the contributions of experienced, active teachers of American literature, offering the student and general reader literary criticism of scholarly depth, written informally. I think there is much in the collection that should be available outside of college classrooms, and I hope others will think so, too.
I am heavily indebted to my two associate editors,
Richard E. Langford
January, 1963 . . .
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