gious South. He had seen enoughnabominable living conditions and desperationnto be obsequious to thenSouth’s agricultural satraps. And henhad no underlying philosophic ideal tonanchor his observations within annAgrarian renascence. Viewing thenworld as a mine for his short stories andnnovels, he described the landless, ill,npoverty-stricken Southerners of thenbare hovels on Tobacco Road asnpathetic people, most of themnbeing illiterate and in ill-healthnfor the length of their days, whonexisted in timeless agonynwithout hope on earth butnclinging to the belief that theirnpains and hunger wouldnmiraculously disappear whennthey were born again as so gliblynpromised by every passingnevangelist. Their tragic lot wasnto have come into the worldnbefore the conscience of theirnfellow men rose to providenassistance and welfare for thenunfortunate. I often recalled mynfather’s way of expressingncompassion for theirnpredicament when he would sayn”those people are as Godforsakennas a toad in a postnhole.”nCaldwell’s characterizations, as henputs it in With All My Might, “werennot imitations of life but interpretationsn. . . more real than life itself in ordernfor it to be believable . . . True realism,nthen, was not the reality of life butna forceful illusion of it.” Having nondesire to change the world, Caldwellnsays, “nevertheless I was motivated bynthe urge to write about the economicnand social plight of the disadvantagednin such a way that readers would benmoved to react with sympathy andneventual assistance for creatures of ansubhuman world.”nSome of the Southerners who sawnin the Southern ethos and Agrariannsocial organization a hope for a futurenmore in alignment with the Jeffersoniannthan the Leviathan state thoughtnCaldwell’s portraits of Southern ruralnlife “shone and stank like a dead mackerelnin the moonlight.” To JohnnDonald Wade, such fiction was a massproducedncommodity, whose ribaldncharacters were developed more forncommercial utility than social criticism.nTo Donald Davidson, such mercenarynpandering was circumscribed by thenevaluation that “Sweet Are the Uses ofnDegeneracy.” However, in Caldwell’snview, to whatever extent the AmericannDream held substance beyond snuffnand religion, it fell short for the massesnof the Southern underclass.nTrouble in July (1940), Georgia Boyn(1943), A House in the Uplandsn(1946), The Sure Hand of Godn(1947), and This Very Earth (1948),nbolstered by paperback sales, each soldnover a million copies. By the end of then1940’s Caldwell’s laurels included designationnby Publishers Weekly asn”America’s most censored author.” AnLamp for Nightfall, written betweennTobacco Road and God’s Little Acrenbut not published until 1952, wasnintended to accomplish for the ruralnNortheast what Tobacco Road hadndone for Georgia. It was regarded byncritics as a compilation of grotesquenincidents and transparent sex and violence.nWarren Beck characterizednClaudelle English (1959) as a superficialnrepackaging of earlier themes andnutterly “without sociological or psychologicalndepth.” Certain Women (1957)nwas so replete with crude plots andncaricatures of allegedly Southern heroinesnthat one reviewer wondered whynonly the South must suffer their presence.nJ.C. Pine, reviewing Miss MamanAimee (1967), opined that Caldwell’snnovels consistently showed an ambivalentntendency toward both low comedynand high tragedy, adding that, in thenabsence of either, Caldwell settled fornnothing.nScott McDonald, writing in Dictionarynof American Biography (1981),nevaluates Caldwell’s impact on Americannletters as being as powerful asnHemingway’s. Even so, the questionnmay be raised whether Caldwell is anregional writer dealing with explicitlynSouthern themes, or whether his writingnmerely happened to have a Southernnsetting. According to the SouthernnLiterary Culture bibliography, Caldwellnhas been the subject of eightnmaster’s theses and four doctoral dissertations.nWhile William Faulknernand his characters, plot, presentation,nand location fill academic journals,nneither Caldwell nor his work are subjectsnfor academic career specialization.nRobert Hazel, commenting innnnSouthern Renascence (1953), highlightednthe contrast between Faulknernand Caldwell. Caldwell created a worldnof forces reflecting “an immediate sociologicaln[sic] concern” in narrativenadvanced by the plain speech of itsncharacters, rather than by the poeticnresonance of good prose that is indispensablento what is identified as Southernnliterature. Caldwell, Hazel concludes,nthough not a Southern writer innthe sense of Faulkner or ThomasnWolfe, may nevertheless be creditednwith reportage from “a country notn[otherwise] heard from.”nWith All My Might may tell readersnmore about Caldwell than they care tonknow, at least in terms of his discoverynof the “irresistible lure of the femalensex.” Avoiding the mantras of thenChristian religion like a plague, andnwholly free of any fundamentalist septicemia,nCaldwell lived fast, but long.nFortunately, the focus in With All MynMight on the adult Caldwell is on himnas a writer. With his talent and proclivities,nit is perhaps fortunate that Caldwellnwas an agnostic. I shudder to thinknwhat he may have accomplished hadnhe gone to Bible school, or decided toncarve out a career in religious charlatanry.nTommy W. Rogers lives in ]ackson,nMississippi.nViolence and thenSubversivenby E. Christian KopffnThe Dynamics of Subversion andnViolence in Contemporary Italynby Vittorfranco S. PisanonStanford, CA: Hoover InstitutionnPress; $18.95nTerrorism has been a plague fornWestern democracies over the pastndecade, but in France and Britain it hasnnot been a fatal disease. Other countriesnhave not been so lucky. The Tupamarosnof Uruguay took a country that, with allnits problems of inflation and corruption,nenjoyed 90 percent literacy, low infantnmortality, and the oldest social securitynsystem outside of Sweden and in twonyears, from 1970-72, drove the Nation-nFEBRUARY 1989/31n