Joe Mesics Literary Canon Discussion: Day of the Locust
Type of Event:
Joe Mesics' Literary Canon is a 'Great Books' book group, meeting on various Wednesdays at 7 PM in the Healdsburg Library. Come try us out.
Our August, 2014 selectioin is Nathaniel Wes's The Day of the Locust.
The novel is organized around two parallel actions: Tod Hackett's and Homer Simpson's self-destructive pursuits of Faye Greener. However, it uses many other symbolic devices to suggest ideas which are difficult to connect to Tod's and Homer's experiences. Unlike Homer, Tod understands much of his experiences, and he is constantly observing and analyzing Hollywood life. His point of view blends with the author's, and the critical stance is usually identifiable with Tod's. Homer, on the other hand, has little understanding of the milieu and of his own motives. His responses are treated satirically because he is deceived by the shoddiness around him, and thus he resorts to clumsy defenses. Both men pursue what is artificial, shallow, and glittering, as well as the explosively sexual Faye Greener, a symbol of Hollywood's falsity and the deceptive American dream. Partly aware of this, Tod still wants her, but he knows that he can't have her and, thus, he knows that his drive is destructive and futile. (from Cliff Noetes)