THE MICHIGAN DAILY
SUNDAY, MAY 12, 1935
IN THE WORLD OF BOOKS
Pylon Is Story Of A Gibbons Does Not Expect His
Flying Tangle . . .""j B k T Beom e A Best §llJr
- - - - ---- - - - I - - - - I
PYLON. Smith and Haas. $2.50 bound to be aroused in the reader, nor
BY SIGMUND PROCTOR did he give any indication that he
(Of The English Department) himself was moved by these feelings.
Mr. Faulkner's new novel - the The reader was left to bear alone the
second he has published since Sanc- burden of disgust. Mr. Faulkner con-
tuary brought him fame - takes its fessed, after the book's publication,
title from the towers on an aviation that he had set out to shock his pub-
field that mark a prescribed course of lic. The shock lay not so much in the
flight. The setting is New Valois (New material as in the treatment - in the
Orleans) at the Mardi Gras, and the very absence of any implication of
action centers about a quartette of the author's attitude. The situation
characters who have come to the city is different in Pylon. Here the re-
that two of them may compete in the porter acts as a resonator of the
flying circus. There are Roger Schu- feelings evoked by the plight of the
mann, the pilot of an outdated fast other characters, and the reader is
plane; a parachute jumper; Laverne, able to assume that the author shares
who is nominally Schumann's wife with him the emotions called forth
but who belongs to- the jumper as in turn by the reporter's plight. A
well; and Jiggs, the mechanic. There feeling of compassion is diffused
is also the small child of Laverne's. through the story. While the barn-
But the story is really that of the storming aviator group cannot be
nameless reporter through whose said to feel real compassion for each
eyes we follow most of the action. other, they do, with the possible ex'-
He finds himself obsessed with these ception of the woman, manifest a
strange creatures from another certain rough kindliness and toler-
world, who, -living from hand to ance in their relationships.
month, are beset by one exigency af- Thus there is in Pylon some
ter another. In particular he is drawn measure of interpretation, some indi-
to Laverne, and comes to love her in cation of values. But the interpre-
a half sensual, half purely protective, tation is not such as to give the work
but wholly futile fashion. During the high significance. The story ends'
three days of the story he devotes with the reporter giving vent to cyni-
himself night and day to looking out cal disillusionment and making off to
for her and her companions, only to find the oblivion of drink. This solu-
have his efforts miscarry and to be tion is a comment on the life of our
rudely dismissed. age, but it is now too familiar a one
Pylon represents a yet further re- for the reiteration to have such im-
move, than did Light in August from portance.
the hard quality of Sanctuary. In Had the novel been written a dec-
Sanctuary the author provided no ade ago its very realism would have
channel within the story for the been important. Now however, the
discharge of the feelings which were serious reader is in no danger of
omitting from his account of things
the degradation and futility that lurk
behind the conventional facades of
lives. He demands something other
than what has ceased to be more than
mere representation; he asks for an
interpretation that betters his adjust-
ment ,to reality either by providing
him an experience of authentic trage-
dy (with its sense of reconciliation)
or by organizing in him a coherent
protest against forms of social or-
ganization that blight human poten-
tialities and that cannot be accepted
as irremediable or unchangeable.
Against this failure of Mr. Faulk-
ner's to create a significant whole
there is to be set his brilliant achieve-
ment in rendering the parts. His is
inquestionably one of the finest tal-
ents in our literature. He manipu-
lates with originality and force and
beauty narrative methods which Joyce
and others initiated. While at certain
moments his descriptive effects ap-
pear artificial or even ludicrous, on
the whole they are informed with a
fine poetic energy and they serve to
cast over the reader the peculiar spell
of a uniquely real world of human
feeling and action.
Pylon, despite the fact that it has
nothing new to say, is an important
book for the aspiring writer and for
all readers concerned with keeping
abreast of the American novel. But
one is moved to regret that the shin-
ing instrument of Mr. Faulkner's
style (taking that word in its widest
sense) should be employed to no bet-
ter purpose than the rendering of es-
cape from one futility into another.
L a Z. \w.7 c" v w w .,
IS THIS AMERICA? By John
devil-may-care, explains why he left
New York at once, went to New Or-
By JOHN SELBY leans, and then worked himself back
"Every Englishman, of course, who to New York the cheapest way pos-
ever voyages to America secretly ex- sible. He had been advised to go any
pects amply to reimburse himself for direction but south, which is why he
his passage money by the profits of chose that district.
the book which he will presently write k6 This America? is one of the most
on his brave adventures in this far- delightful travel books ever turned
away and unknown land, and on the out on America, for the reader with a
curious and laughable customs of its sense of humor. When he wishes, Mr.
natives who will be his hosts, and if I Gibbons can be as devastating as Mr.
add one name more to the glorious Priestley. The difference is that he
but already rather long list of ex- turns his irony on England quite
plorers, I have at least the excuse that as often as the other way about. He
mine need not pretend to be much of seems actually anxious to tell the
a book. For being neither a famous I facts. He made, through the south,
politician nor a famous prizefighter, I hundreds of what the advertising
nor indeed a famous anything at all, fraternity calls "contacts," and ap--
I had my doubts, you see, about be- parently the people "contacted" liked
coming a best seller, and had there- him, for they talked freely and were
fore taken the precaution of paying as hospitable. Mr. Gibbons' book will,
little passage money as possible." not please the pink and red reviewers
This is an Englishman (really an because he quotes no Marx, draws no
Irishman) starting a book called "Is long-winded social maxims.
This America?" It does not sound
much like one; Mr. Gibbons admits
that he came third class in the next H. W. CLARK
paragraph. He adds that he doesn't English Bootmaker
have much money, that the publishers 534-536 Forest
are always cutting down on his ad- Jockey Boots from $4.95
vances, and he is even willing to take English Riding Boots
digs at his fellow countrymen. from $6.50
This tolerance, and a certain Irish
- - ---.------- -i
AT THE MAJESTIC
"GO INTO YOUR DANCE"
Another musical picture! More new
songs! More dancing! Hundreds of
chorus girlsand boys! And Al Jolson,
this time with Ruby Keeler, in a com-
monplace story about a play boy actor
whom Broadway producers refuse to
back because he is undependable, but
who comes back by himself (with
gangster and female complications).
That is "Go Into Your Dance." Al
sings several songs, the best of which
are "She's A Latin from Manhattan,"
"Go Into Your Dance," and "About
A Quarter to Nine." Each one features
Mrs. Jolson (Miss Keeler to the un-
informed) with her rhumbas, tangos,
waltzes, taps, and bedroom eyes. It's
the same old stuff without a single
new twist of the hips or an original
idea. There is the customary climactic
show opening which suffers the usual
financial difficulties. And the villain-
ess, Helen Morgan, gets her just de-
serts along with all the opposing
This show is commendable only to
those who never tire of mildly excit-
ing rhythm (done in Hollywood's
most grandiose style), Broadway
playboy stuff,ssweet young heroines
whose sugary expressions melt the
hearts in the hairiest of chests, mam-
my soqgs (there is only one herein,
however), and love - - that wonder-
ful thing that creeps in at the most
unexpected, incongruous, and (in the
movies) picture-saving moments.
THE -JOY$ OF TRAEL
The trip that is well
planned gives you the
most for every dollar
spent * You want the maximum for your
time and money-let us, as experts, prepare
a few plans for your consideration " Consult
us for travel anywhere. Absolutely no charge
for our service. No obligation on your part.
FREDERICK S. RANDALL
of All Varieties
Ivory and Wood Work
Silk Robes Linens
12 Nickels Arcade
Brass and Many
300-B South State
1. Wednesday, May 15, 8:15 P.M.
Artist Concert. Festival debut of HELEN JEPSON, Metre-
politan Opera Soprano. World premiere of "Drum.Taps."
Howard Hanson, composer, conducting. The Chicago Sym-
phony Orchestra, The Choral Union, Frederick Stock, Con-
Thursday, May 16, 8:15 P.M.
Artist-Choral Concert. Festival debut of MARY MOORE,
coloratura soprano, of the Metropolitan. "King David" by
Honegger. Ethyl Hayden, soprano; Myrtle Leonard, con-
tralto; Paul Althouse, tenor; Paul Leyssac, narrator. Choral
Union, Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Earl V. Moore and
Frederick Stock, Conductors.
We shall be happy indeed to show you the New Styles of
Engraving for WEDDING and SOCIAL STATIONERY.
The quality and prices cannot fail to please you. Bring
us your order for VISITING CARDS. We assure you
prompt service and guarantee all work, quality and price.
WA R'S BOOKSTORES
STATE STREET MAIN STREET
CA RD S 7
Includes Plate, Stock
Choice of eight smart engraved
lettering styles. White Vellum,
Ivory Plate, or *Gretna-Green
Buy a supply of these useful
cards at this low price!
3. Friday, May 17,2:30 P.M.
Young People's Concert. RUTH POSSELT, violinist. Or-
chestra accompaniment. Young People's Festival Chorus.
World premiere of "Jumblies" by Dorothy James. Eric,
DeLamarter and Juva Higbee, Conductors.
4. Friday, May 17 8:15 P.M.
Artist concert. GIOVANNI MARTINELLI of the Metropoli-
tan Opera, tenor. The Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Fred-
erick Stock, Conductor.
5. Saturday, May 18, 2:30 P.M.
Symphony concert. JOSEF LHEVINNE, pianist. Chicago
Symphony Orchestra, Frederick Stock, Conductor.
6. Saturday, May 18, 8:15 P.M.
"Boris Godunof" in English by Moussorgsky. MAXIM
PANTELEIEFF of the Russian Grand Opera as "Boris."
Myrtle Leonard, contralto; Paul Althouse, tenor; Wilbur
Evans and Theodore Webb, baritones. Choral Union, Chi-
cago Symphony Orchestra. Earl V. Moore, Conductor.
SEASON TICKETS, if May Festival coupons from Choral
Union tickets is returned, $2.00, $3.00 and $4.00, otherwise
$5.00, $6.00 and $7.00. SINGLE CONCERTS $1.00, $1.50
and $2.00, on sale at the School of Music, Maynard Street.
MYRON E. SLATER