the author—they are united by the mindrnthat has projeeted them. Having attainedrna eertain age, lie remembers that thingsrnused to be different. Some of his e.ssaysrnare about his background in PcniisyKania,rnand his schoohng, and his experiencesrnoer the years with sue): passions asrnbaseball, football, and railroads. Othersrnoffer memories of such writers as EricrnVoegelin and Robert Penn Warrenrn(whom he knew at L.S.U.), and TheodorernRoethke and Malcolm Cowleyrn(whom he knew at the University ofrnWashington). But from ficilnian we alwavsrnexpect the directiv literary engagementrnand his way with definitions, andrnvc arc not disappointed in that regard, either.rnProfessor Heilman has a revealing wayrnof attacking texts which I think of, perhapsrnwrongly, as Aristotelian. Perhaps Irnshould see his characteristic approach asrnrelated to the practices of the old NewrnCriticism; or maybe it is simply a cjualityrnof Heilman himself Whatever it is, Irnknow it when I see it, and I relish the results.rnHis treatment of i’/ie Taming of thernShrew insists that the play be read in relationrnto Hie genre of farce. Thus releasedrnfrom an’ distortion of consciousnessrnsuch as has required a feminist readingrnfor a century, Heilman clarifies our understandingrnof something that ought tornbe rather simple, or rather is transparentrnafter his exposition. “Petruchio not onlyrnuses the word tame more than once butrnopenly compares his method to that usedrnin training falcons (IV.i.l91ff.). There isrnno reason whatever to suppose that thisrnwas not meant quite literally.” Hcilman’srnargument, which he calls a “return of thernshrew,” lets us see Shakespeare’s triumphrnover the limitations of farce as related tornPetruchio’s achievement as a precociousrnartist and Kate’s growth as a woman whornbegan as—a shrew. Even in dealing withrna work ot this stature, Heilman has thatrneye both for detail and for the force ofrngenre diat has served him so well in hisrnother writings on Shakespeare. And 1rncould say the same for his essays on Cymhehnernand I’imon of Athens. But beyondrnliteran-historieal considerafions, 1 noficernthat Heilman’s treatment of texts has arnbroad applicability. Pfis sense of disfincfionsrnand of the distortion of extremitiesrnleads him to suppose that we should bern”fanatics against fanaticism and skepticsrnof skepticism.” The balanced imdcrstandingrnof literature is related to a balancedrnview of die world.rnBut Heilman has distingiushed himselfrnin writing about fiction as well as drama,rnand again he shows why. I wish thatrnI had seen his sueeinct treatment of TlioniasrnHardv a long time ago —it would ha’crnsaved me a lot of trouble. Hard- alw aysrnconfused me by the contradiction betweenrnhis editorializing and his performance,rnbut he can’t fool Heilman, whoserncool clarity makes me feel a little bit likernHolden Caulfield blurrily rememberingrnE.ustacia Vye. Examining an utterly differentrnwriter, Heilman’s treatinent of EudorarnWelt)”s Losing Battles (one of thernfinest of Southern novels) is also a brilliantrnperformance. “In brief, losing Battlesrnis a higliK- ordered book, but it doesrnnot u car its order on its sleeve.” Pursuingrnlanguage and myth to their foundations,rnHeilman finds allusions to Sophoclesrnand Fielding buried in Welt)-‘s remarkablernwork. His account of it will norndoubt survive as long as the novel does.rnHcilman’s essays on education are asrnaluable as his pieces focused on specificrnworks, because his analytical abilit’rnyields such revealing results. Balance is arnprinciple of the mind, and not only ofrndramafic structure, hisisting that “therernis no need to equate democracy with thernslipshod, chaotic, and lowest commonrndenominator,” he remembers both therneducation he knew and the ideal behindrnit as democratic in the best sense: “| I |t assumedrnthat everv man was capable of beingrninducted into the community ofrnknowledge and understanding.” ThatrnProfessor Heilman himself personifiesrnthe practice and the ideals of that conimunitv’rnis evident on every page of thisrnbook of professions.rn/.O. Tate is a professor of English atrnDowling College on Long Island.rnRECEIVED WISDOMrnStiiJi CattolicirnI he September 1999 issue of this fine ttalian ioiirii;]! edited bv Cesare Cavallerirnprovides its typical mixture oi cultural eouuuentary, orthodox tlieolo£;’, audrnhard-hitting political anahsis. There are articles on “man’s metaphsical capacity,”rnPadre Pio, and therapy tor homosexuals as well as reviews of .niericau filmsrnand current Italian books.rnl£ttiire 1967-1997 by Cesare Cavalleri (624 pp., L.38.000). Available from ArcsrnBooks (Casclla Postalc 17107, 20170 Milano; Cavalleri is known primarilv as a Catholic man of letters, and Arcs Booksrn(which he also directs) has recently published this collection of his reviews andrnshort essas. Lovers of Italian (and Anglo-.American) literature will find sO vearsrnof insightful and measured comments on uriters from Elio Aeeroeca andrnConrad Aiken to tJngaretti and Zola. Cavalleri’s is a Christian criticism Iree ofrncant, ttc is capable of appreciating the tragic genius of Pasolini, for example,rnwithout minimizing die moral horror inspired by his death: “The death of PierrnPaolo Pasolini is not a tragic incident: it is etched into die logic of a iee thatrnvainly has tried to pass for being a ‘legitimate diversion.”‘ His essays on hisrnfriend Eugenio Corti dispku’ a prolovmd appreciation of the greatest livingrnChristian novelist.rnLooking for a good book?rnSupport Chronicles by purchasing books, CDs, and other itemsrnthrough the link and search engine on our website:rnwww. c hroniclesmagazin e. orgrnChronicles ^i[ receive between 5 and 15 percent on every purchase.rnFEBRUARY 2000/31rnrnrn