Alfred Kazin is a teacher and literary critic, author of that excellent It is called “A Walker in the City” and it is Mr. Kazin’s loving and artfully. Alfred Kazin burst onto the American literary scene in , when his first book, ” On “A Walker in the City,” his second, signaled the other direction his career. More than six decades after its initial publication, Alfred Kazin’s A Walker in the City () occupies a curious place in the canons of Jewish-American and.

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Kazin became introspective, of course. Kazin has written many expert vignettes of his friends and neighbors, of “the toughest school in a tough neighborhood” which he attended, of the synagogue where the God Who was worshipped was “our oldest habit,” of the swarming life of the streets and of the family life which centered in his mother’s kitchen — where dresses were made, where friends were received and where the boy Alfred slept in a quilt on three lazin chairs.

A Walker in the City by Alfred Kazin

Mar 01, Christinep rated it it was amazing. Quite a splendid ode to author’s Brooklyn childhood and cool glimpse of race relations and immigration back in the early- to mid-2oth century. The New York yhe Kazin’s youth, in the decade before the Depression, comes alive on the pages of this memoir as he revisits humble scenes in Brownsville and beyond, lingering along the way over sensory detail.

Kazin established his own critical reputation in the mids with On Native Groundsa study of American literature. A walker in the city, Volume 6 Alfred Kazin Snippet view – Through the screen came the chant of the score being called up from the last handball game below. The life of art galleries and museums, he suggests, of walking to and from the city and the possibilities it represents, seems both more real and more meaningful to him than almost anything walkker do with his faith.


Nov 04, Cort Gross rated it it was amazing. A classic portrayal of the Jewish immigrant oazin of the s. Rather, it was thee pointed — even a polemical — response to literary and political ideas that had been of deep concern to Kazin since as early as the mids, the tumultuous decade in which he began his career as a writer and critic.

Although “A Walker in the City” is exceedingly well written for the most part, sensitive and perceptive throughout, it is vague and elusive in its impact. References to this book The One Best System: The rebellious might sink into crime. Kazin is a ravenous reader and a lonely young man, hungry for ideas and fantasies and art and grandeur that exists beyond the bounds of his close, poor, assured Jewish world.


May 29, Thomas Breen rated it it was amazing. His discovery of books, of the adventure of language in Whitman and the King James Bible, are especially poignant.

Media reporter, reviewer, producer, guest booker, blogger. However, his politics were Alfred Kazin June 5, — June 5, was an American writer and literary critic, many of whose writings depicted the immigrant experience in early twentieth century America.

He became one of our foremost intellectual minds. From this familiar plot, critics have extrapolated a no less familiar set of values, presenting the memoir as a conventional assimilation narrative told in the key of postwar nostalgia. A Walker in the City from BookRags.

A Walker in the City – Alfred Kazin – Google Books

I’ve never been much of a fan of memoirs, something about them has never resonated with me. The prose is high-minded but the perspective is sour; Kazin escaped, through literature, not with survivor’s laughter but with tears that never dried.

Essays on American and European Writersand I became a bit of a fan.

Project Akfred promotes the creation and dissemination of essential humanities and social science resources through collaboration with libraries, publishers, and scholars worldwide. The scenes were very evocative and lively, full of emotion and epiphanies: A street scene which derives from a boyhood in Brownsville, in Brooklyn, and which- in its succession of sequences- radiates from a slum settlement of Jewish immigrants to the far bourns of “”the city”” beyond, from the tradition and solidarity and insulation of the foreign born to the quest for the “”great world that was anything just out of Brownsville””.

I’m waljer reading this and loving ghe. Took me back, although not as far back as the author, to the oazin that I passed through on the LL train. In the second section of the memoir, subtitled “The Kitchen”, the author goes further into the metaphorical heart of his explorations as he describes life at the physical and emotional heart of his family, the kitchen of the family’s home. Book titles OR Journal titles. He reads at every library he can get to, dives deep into American 19th century history through his walkfr and museums and his endless walks throughout the city, in particular over and over the Brooklyn Bridge.


Kazin doesn’t even convey a clear idea about what kind of little boy he was himself, beyond his conscientious industry, his passion for books and his powers of observation and memory.

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We neither believed nor disbelieved. But what emerged was the story of his own boyhood encounters with it, starting from Brownsville, the Brooklyn Jewish neighborhood of his birth, then stretching out to alluring, mysterious Manhattan and from there to the world.

Remembering the walks he took as a child and the walks of the pious pilgrimage to his native ground he has taken in maturity, Mr. Common terms and phrases afternoon awnings block blue breath bridge Brooklyn Brooklyn Bridge Brooklyn Museum brownstones Brownsville burning candy store cellar Chester Street clanged Coney Island damp dark deep delicatessen door drugstore dusk dust dusty East New York empty everything face father felt fire escape Fletcher’s Castoria Friday front gas mantle girl glass hand handball hear heard Highland Park Jewish Jews knew light lived looked morning mother movie Negro never passed past Pitkin Avenue punchball Rockaway Rockaway Avenue roof round and round Russian seemed Sholem Aleichem side silence singing smell smile Socialists Solovey stand staring steps stone stood strange subway suddenly summer night synagogue tenements Theodore Roosevelt thick thing thought trolley cars Tsuzamen voice waited walk wall watch women wooden word yard yellow Yeshua Yiddish.

I stopped by one afternoon to pick up dinner, and saw the owners all dressed up-a well preserved 20 year old suit, camera, fedora, etc. Summerwhich is usually affixed to the beginning of A Death in the Family. Project MUSE Mission Project MUSE promotes the creation and dissemination of essential humanities and social science resources through collaboration with libraries, publishers, and scholars worldwide.

He makes you feel the summer heat and taste the Jewish foods and smell the odors of Brownsville in the Nineteen Twenties and the first year or two of the depression. My problem is that I’m not very interested in most of the people whose memoirs seem the most marketable. This last is particularly noteworthy in that Socialism was, at least in his youth, both a beacon of hope and a real chance that true equality and true freedom can be realized.