Slouching Towards Orthodoxy

Orrin Judd has some thoughts on Joan Didion’s career arc:

Actually, what’s most striking about Ms Didion’s work is how good the early stuff was–Slouching and the White Album–and how bad the later, as she became just the sort of trend-sucker she’d previously warned against. Thus, where you’d think someone so smart might have learned something from opposing Ronald Reagan’s war on Marxism in Latin America in the ’80s, she instead opposes liberalizing the Middle East too. It’s a rare enough life arc, but she went from an interesting young conservative to a depressingly orthodox liberal as she aged.


She’s not alone, though in one sense: with the exception of Tom Wolfe himself, few of the New Journalists he touted in the mid-1970s aged very well.


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