Letters of Flannery O'Connor:

Phillips, Robert

the one that stole the show, and certainly Teddy is the only succeed. Whenever Teddy starts to get obstreperous, for in- character here that's allowed to come even close to the...

...St...
...She didn't own O'Connor's words...
...The resurrection of Christ seems the high point in (Laughter) the law of nature...
...costs...
...Fourth, for long dis- music sounds alike to me," she says in the world off balance for him...
...When we get to Indeed...
...you have a with the schoolteacher, but it is the old fork of the tree, the corkscrew...
...Part of the problem with the ending is just that played by Michael Moriarity in Report to the Commissioner group therapy is by nature open-ended...
...She remained a subscriber about "the rejecting of life at the years...
...learned from the writings of Jacques PROCESS THEOLOGY FOCUS Maritain, "the habit of art" defined as a Bernard Loomer, "Process Theology Perspectives: Love, Power, and Social quality or virtue of the mind essential to Reconception...
...the Incarnation, the Milledgeville, Georgia, Father...
...look forward to a resurrection of the body, which will be (Pause-waiting to get the ladies' attention...
...Barth to John Barth...
...MASTER OF ARTS IN THEOLOGY She wanted no personal sympathy, merely artistic appreciation...
...To a professor have no interest in him...
...The truth does did you see...
...fiction-Flannery O'Connor was inci- a television until 1961, when some One of her favorites of her stories, "A sive in such matters...
...Right now the whole world seems to be going through a A CATHOLIC CELEBRITY dark night of the soul...
...resurrection which are the true laws of the flesh and the Eh...
...For instance, many of her characnovels and stories of Flannery Selected and edited by Sally Fitzgerald ters were intended as the Devil perO'Connor- important twentieth century sonified: "My Devil has a name, a hisfictional works about which the writer Farrar, Straus & Giroux, $15, 617 pp tory, and a definite plan...
...13 April 1979: 219 on the way to the polls to cancel out each ager, and some other worthy who I keep -THEOLOGY other's vote...
...sanitarium every week tionally...
...But with an effect like this use of slow film...
...The nar- ROBERT PHIUjPs's books include The Conlishing Co...
...John's University/ Collegeville Obviously she possessed great faith...
...Even her of grace for her anyway-a silly old Richard Stern, which have appeared in first editor did not understand her pur- woman-but it leads him to shoot her...
...of these laws...
...She accepted her THE CULT EXPERIENCE- loss of hair and swollen face and crutches Donald Goergen SALVATION OR SLAVERY...
...Whenever Teddy starts to get obstreperous, for incharacter here that's allowed to come even close to the two- stance, we hear the sound of a rattlesnake on the sound track...
...that purity was the most mysterious of the virtues, but it MACON (great volume...
...His list of or-ad layout...
...Christ...
...It's the moment had included more of the funny ones to Southern decaying magnolia...
...letter, with salary expectations, to falls into a depression characterized by FATHER JOHN B. SHEERIN, C.S.P., is a Arthur Jones, Editor and Publisher, Na- frustration and rage...
...It may be that the least) with wrong-headed academics of English she wrote tersely, from her a writer can sentimentalize certain segwho wrote to inflict their own interpreta- hospital bed, "As for Mrs...
...with grace...
...It is not the soul she says that MiLLEDGEVILLE, GEORGIA will rise but the body, glorified...
...And finally, for sheer when not writing fiction or letters, was to led man...
...church puts on the body...
...I will not be taking any bath...
...and teeth...
...The company is looking for our society's malaise...
...Murphy-next to him...
...As soon as production was comcharacterizations and acting would need a lot of sly help to pleted, she married him...
...Earl A. Weis, S. J., Loyola University of Chicago Chairman 6525 North Sheridan Road accepting her lack of recognition as she Chicago, Illinois 60828 accepted the constant presence of pain: AN EQUAL OPPORTUNITY EDUCATOR/EMPLOYER...
...We know them as we see them, not as God sees And wharre are you from...
...motion, Katselas was really straining to move us...
...My mama got her hand thinking must or should be the warden at AT caught in the electric mixer but both sur- the state penitentiary...
...We offer a broad spectrum of one, two, and three week courses, institutes, seminars, Some of her most profoundly expressed and workshops in religious education and beliefs ("assumptions") were expressed theology which can be combined to meet in letters to Dr...
...and religious the dirty dishes...
...Her letters abound The Violent Bear It Away, she reveals, Commonweal: 216 weakly lethal look, whereupon greatly encouraged, she From Flannery O' Connor: grabbed my arm and whispered (very loud) in my ear...
...A higher paradox confounds emotion as well as when I finished it but she got well, then I sent it to a reason and there are long periods in the lives of all of us, patient at the local state sanitarium but he escaped so and of the saints, when the truth as revealed by faith is now they are just piling up...
...of Cat...
...My only quibble is I wish she school-the gothic, the grotesque, the reaches out to touch him...
...Said he to me: God is...
...We have a fine new lit- tion of stories, Everything That Rises PROGRAMS erature commission in this state, com- Must Converge, contains true classics of M.A...
...in (San rancisco an But "habit" here might also be seen as a ,.T nun's habit: few have possessed greater dedication to Christian principles...
...Like when the Grandmother recognizes from the large body of extant corre- She resented being lumped into any the Misfit as one of her own children and spondence...
...Justin Martyr to Salinger, Karl "the redemptive quality of the Negro's capacity for turning a phrase...
...The only this material in the first place...
...Books: ON BEING FLANNERY O'CONNOR There are at least five reasons to read LETTERS OF FLA1IWERY O'COAROR: with illuminating explications of her this book...
...as do same boy who said I had a Lutheran sensibility) which most of my friends of less stature than he...
...I am going as a pilgrim, soon as I turned around she fixed me with a moist not a patient...
...She was also, it suffering for us all...
...and it has with modern life...
...there should Maureen Gallagher Kenan B. Osborne, O.FM...
...I was in Atlanta the other day in Davi- LOURDES son's...
...member of the Secretariat for Catholic-Jewish tional Catholic Reporter, P.O...
...What Edward Kilmartin, S.J...
...Tuition Scholarships us, is a reflection of the tensions and Teaching/Research 'George W. Shea anxieties produced by our social system...
...seem to be conceivable to you that such cause you have a story...
...T. R. Spivey...
...Death, decay, destruction are the suspension Milledgeville, Georgia...
...Or if you do, you shouldn't...
...They think faith is a big electric blanket, when of course it is the cross...
...CHRIST & THE FLESH If ever there has been devised something suitable for the To see Christ as God and man is probably no more remission of temporal punishment due to sin, this is it...
...I never heard of that...
...Department of Theology Contact: Yet she joked of this, as with everything, Sister Mary Peter McGinty, C.S.J...
...writer did not proceed as something sepa- Contact, Director of Graduate Students, School of Theology, St...
...James Mackey their faith, they had to work for it...
...He was But I don't think Katselas ever really had the faith in the cheating, which suggests that he never was able to believe in dramatic power of this property that Gortner did...
...people don't realize is how much religion and many others...
...A Stroke of Good Fortune" is funny, human documents I have read in treatment...
...M. Sartre finds Malefactors] in the Commonweal by a Fr...
...She saw all of her stories as nor's best friends (I cannot bring myself Flannery O'Connor wrote fiction for being about the action of grace on a to call this delightfully old-fashioned about twenty years, and much of that character who is unwilling to support it: lady Ms...
...When his versity's Lincoln Center Liberal Arts College one to join the team...
...BIBLICAL THEOLOGY HISTORICAL THEOLOGY Full of ourselves SYSTEMATIC THEOLOGY THEOLOGICAL ETHICS THEOLOGY AND SOCIETY THE CULTURE OF NARCISSISM der of our age, replacing the hysterical FINANCIAL AID Christopher Lasch and obsessive neuroses more common at AVAILABLE the turn of the century...
...O'Connor was a vo- slightly dim-witted Camp Fire Girl" (in frenzy...
...David Stanley, S.J...
...She said she reckoned they does not satisfy emotionally...
...occurs to me that it would never have entered the human Mi-kun...
...in Theology Ph.D...
...It difficult today than it has always been, even if today lasted three hours, included a talk by a priest and one by there seem to be more reasons to doubt...
...election day consists of "my Mama and I...
...in Religious Studies posed of a preacher, a picture-show man- the form...
...I asked the bad novels...
...become the predominant psychic disorConunonweal: 220...
...John's rate from life as she lived it...
...She Luis Alonso Schokel, S.J...
...O'Connor) has chosen well time she was defending what she wrote...
...I have a one-legged friend and I asked her what would not agree that for the natural man the Incarnation they said to John at the gate...
...When Time magazine later reviews that novel with a full medical description of her lupus, she describes the piece as "a really sickening review and in very bad taste...
...This may be because tionally for the person brought up under many forms of the lame will be able to knock everybody else aside with false intellectual discipline such as 19th-century their crutches...
...When she knew Es- from many different countries: quire would pay her $1500 a story, she persisted in sending them to the Sewanee Michael R. Peterson, M.D...
...Finally, Milwaukee, Wisconsin 53233 peared in our land, we have been treated institutions which shape personality, almost annually to book-length diag- families, schools and the media, once noses of our nation's maladies...
...I take it and I not change according to our ability to stomach it emo- used to send it to a girl in a T.B...
...Of her second and best novel, luminous letter-writer...
...Sally Fitzgerald, one of O'Con- anyway...
...She seems never to have "A major step towards developing a br' CARROLL STOKER AND JO ANNE PARKE liked her appearance, describing herself new theory of celibacy...
...base of his thesis, Lasch proceeds in his have demonstrable experience in at least earlier chapters to describe the narcissis= two of the following: direct mail market- As the title of his'book suggests, Lasch ing/advertising/copywriting/brochure- believes that narcissism lies at the root of tic personality of our time...
...To "A," 6 September 19553 During the priest's and bishop's addresses he took out his breviary and read it under the table...
...The film suggests that Katselas thought the performance...
...SUMMER PROGRAM, JUNE 14 -JULY 27, 1979 The title given this collection, The Habit Graduate studies in liturgy, theology, religious education, and spirituality of Being, stems from a concept she had Special one-week workshops in liturgy and religious education...
...and, "I think it's MARQUETTE vived...
...the dead uncle and the schoolteacher...
...This, Lasch tells Norton, $11.95, 268 pp...
...Space does not permit a long list of O'Connorisms...
...She urged younger fiction writers to reread Joyce's Dubliners for his handling of epiphany.y and form...
...A few will doWithin these letters, we are told that rereading her first novel was like "spending the day eating a horse blanket...
...wandering friends that, if they wanted Godfrey Diekmann, O.S.B...
...Tennessee Flintrock Sash), pledges, suspension of the laws of the flesh and the physical, but resolutions, welcomes, responses, and dedications...
...Catholic Bishops in Washington...
...Her letters University, Collegeville, MN 56321 reveal an integrated personality (in the Jungian sense) continually ascending in r its strength, humor and generosityacquiring, not only the habit of art, but the habit of being...
...source...
...Catholic church...
...What she did do, "The figure for the new Jesus-a shrivelfriends...
...sided complexities of that role...
...I wished I had LIFE ON CRUTCHES had one...
...the born variety the point of view is more to them...
...also spent next to no time listening to and the Misfit's more profoundly-felt in(She was not, for instance, a convert, but music until late in her life: "All classical volvement with Christ's action which set a lifelong Catholic...
...She even discerned a difference interpret the works for them...
...He addressed her letters as if "to a This moment of grace excites the devil to a treasure-trove...
...Her last collecChristian traditions arrangement...
...for my part I think that when I know what the laws of the I sat at a table with 8 ladies...
...It has to be forced to a was a combination of the personalities of Teddy and Red in this dramatic conclusion...
...She addressed one Freudian Whenever she wrote about the craft of naturally integrated into the personalcritic, "I'm sorry the book didn't come fiction, which was frequently, she was ity...
...John Gallen, S.), continually wrote her spiritually- James Gill, S.J., M.D...
...To "A," 19 May 1956] hideous, emotionally disturbing, downright repulsive...
...The title might contain Svenc( summer another meaning (one of which the author would not approve, knowing how she shied from "double-meanings...
...Jerome Murphy-O'Connor~ O.P and Kenyon reviews...
...IMAGE BOOKS 25th In the wake of Jonestown comes Insights into O'Connor's life revealed "careful, sensitive reporting" by these letters are saddening...
...Second, for Robert Phillips pride, and his aim is the destruction of the advice on how to write your own Divine Plan...
...Amena When a relative pays for her to visit Lourdes to take the cure, she prays not for her crippled limbs but for the completion of her second novel, seven years in the making...
...His new collection of poems, The ing, and explaining the changes in, the live in a thinly populated psychic world Pregnant Man, has just been published by liturgy, education and sacramental rites Doubleday...
...has an opening for a marketing some disturbing things to say about our Having established the psychological specialist...
...Sickness before death is a very appropriate thing and I think those who don't have it JL School of Theology miss one of God's mercies...
...promiscuity, hypochondria, avoidance post-Vatican II U.S...
...Spirituality Courses The idea of Flannery O'Connor journeying alone from Georgia to Texas on SUMMER SESSION BEGINS JUNE 18,1979 crutches to appear in an empty auditorium is heartbreaking and absurd...
...One s to wit t e wor almost suspects her of taking private join these renowned scholars vows of poverty...
...Third, for insight Dominican Sisters gave her one in Good Man Is Hard to Find," she deinto Flannery O'Connor's life, about gratitude for getting their book, A scribes as "a duel of sorts between the which relatively little has been known, Memoir of Mary Ann, to a publisher...
...lishing Co...
...Another story, "A That is a lot of freight for one book, but might be added, a constant reader of Temple of the Holy Ghost," is said to these 596 pages of correspondence carry Commonweal (in the pages of which, revolve about the question, "What is it...
...them...
...Drawing from both Freud and later writ- of both competition and dependence, Knowledge of pricing, a strong under- shallowness, the inability to form deep standing of production schedules, a flair ers on the subject, he describes the narfor design, an ability to work closely with cissistic personality as one dominated by those whose products are being mar- a grandiose conception of self, a concepketed, a capacity for leadership and supervision, would be plusses...
...Buy this book, for rare insight Building an American Chicago, he says, we push them down a into one of our rarest, and in her time, Catholic theology in dialogue with the mayor slot...
...Andrew M. At your bookstore $2.95 Greeley...
...She Grandmother and her superficial beliefs and some of which has been misleading...
...of sex symbols, and in a way that would "You don't write a story because you The modem reader will identify himself not enter any head-the lifted bough, the have an idea but because...
...It is uplifting to find a modem wri- June .20 - August 3 ter of fiction who still conceives the For further information, church as the body of Christ, Christ con- write: Director, tinuing in time, and as such a divine Graduate Programs institution: "If the church is not a divine in Theology, institution, it will turn into an Elks Department A, Club...
...I have always thought What city is that near...
...For me it is the virgin birth...
...The "artificial nigger" of the pleasure-Flannery O'Connor possessed read voraciously, exploring everything story of that name was meant to convey a wicked sense of humor and a heavenly from St...
...Box 281, It is Lasch's belief that narcisssism has Relations of the National Conference of Kansas City, MO 64141...
...decreed that I should be invited to a huge convention luncheon of the Nat...
...NCR has and to experience intense feelings of GEORGE W SHEA is Dean of Fordham Unitalented people and is looking for some- emptiness and inauthenticity...
...There are no letters to lovers...
...Miles ahead of the usual to one correspondent as "all spectacles treatments of this delicate topic...
...If he wrote good novels, I'd graduate theology for lay men and women, clergy steward on the airplane what he did with be worried about the church...
...His name is wrote many, many letters "explaining" Lucifer, he's a fallen angel, his sin is herself to correspondents...
...quarterlies...
...COUN L. WESTERBECK, JR...
...consciousness to conceive of purity if we were not to Where are you from, Father...
...Women...
...Quite logically, narcissistic traits is a chilling one: supera capable, hardworking and productive ficial charm, pseudo-awareness, sexual marketing specialist who preferably has therefore, he begins his study with a consome knowledge of, and interest in, the sideration of the narcissistic personality...
...First is for insight into the THE HABIT OF BEING texts...
...Asso...
...To "A," 5 May 1956] I have decided I must be a pretty pathetic sight with these crutches...
...If there is no As analytical as she was of her own things merely have a natural place in the possibility for change in a character, we work, O'Connor was impatient (to say story, a natural use...
...Future faculty include Shubert Ogden, David Griffin, Lewis Ford...
...The cussions of theology which are as lucid as one letter, "and all the rest of it sounds mummy in Wise Blood she describes as unexpected in casual letters between like The Beatles...
...Joan Chatfield, M.M...
...Christ- infected themselves, hasten the process opher Lasch's The Culture of Narcissism by which narcissistic behavior becomes is the latest addition to the "what's the most attractive strategy for dealing The National Catholic Reporter Pub- wrong with us" bibliography...
...It does not satisfy emosaid "The lame shall enter first...
...physical...
...Much of its Press) and Aspects ofA lice, recently re-issued growth has come from expansion into created to mask his disappointment with cassettes and printed material support- both self and others, forces him in fact to by Vintage...
...I would like to work out some such least-appreciated artists...
...more to them than money...
...These s~ your interests and schedules...
...attempts to validate his self image fail, he Send a detailed resume and cover in Manhattan...
...May, I must ments of the population and get away tions upon her, or, worse, asking her to have named her that because I knew with it...
...To "A," 28 August 19551 .. , They...
...Yet, late in Scripture Studies life, she gave a "public reading" in Historical-Systematic Theology Texas at which "there was no public...
...and an ancient deaf priest flesh and the physical really are, then I will know what named Fr...
...Assistantships In other words, according to Lasch, our Write: GIVEN Americans' fascination with culture both elicits narcissistic behavior THEOLOGY DEPARTMENT Charles L. Coughlin Hall diagnosis, medical, psychological from its members and advances those and even automotive, it is not surprising with marked narcissistic traits to posiMU Univ&stte versity that, as signs of social illness have ap- tions of prominence and power...
...Witness the dark night of the soul in individual saints...
...But what she has included is poses...
...Simons (the God emotionally unsatisfactory in the extreme...
...is a 15-year-old and growing cissist's inflated self image, initially fessional Poets (Southern Illinois University multimedia publishing house...
...In fact, the role of the white cop slow motion...
...Whatever Katselas and the rest remarkable thing about Katselas's direction is the way it relies of us may feel about this movie, though, Gortner can console on little cinematic tricks of a sort usually intended to shore up a himself that at least one person must have been inspired by his weak performance...
...For you it may a bishop, the introduction of sixteen guests (II was the be a matter of not being able to accept what you call a sixteenth like Gen...
...To "A," 10 November 1955] mechanism, for instance, Leaving the Incarnation aside, the very notion of God's existence is not emotionally COMMONWEAL satisfactory anymore for great numbers of people, which There was a review of [Caroline Gordon's The does not mean that God ceases to exist...
...In a sense sickness is a place, more instrucLOYOLA UNIVERSITY OF CHICAGO tive than a long trip to Europe, and it's always a place where there's no comCommonweal: 218 pany, where nobody can follow...
...be some folks that some things mean Robert J. Hater Anthony Z Padovano Bruno V. Manno Bernard Tyrrell, S.J...
...It doesn't believable character or just simply beman who speaks for me...
...I am always astonished at the emphasis the I didn't get that...
...It is one of the most moving, and alas, her early books received rough purity...
...She was sincere when writing a friend that she'd rather finish the PRIESTS RELIGIOUS LAITY book than walk...
...O'Connor's salt-free diet tastes charming that Cardinal Spellman writes Since 1961 - Pioneering in just like "stewed Kleenex...
...Purrrflesh and spirit united in peace, in the way they were in gatory...
...Victim of year (The New York Times Book Review) lupus (which killed her at 39), bone disinon the bows and whys of the cult phenomenon tegration, shingles, anemia, later a tumor and what it is ALLGODS and cystitis and kidney infection, she . THE SEXUAL was, as Sally Fitzgerald suggests, not so CELIBATE doing re .our CHILDREN much stoical as serene...
...It was no doubt to help him There's some hokey hand-held camera work, too, and at the with the realization of that role that Gortner brought in an end Katselas does the moment when Red shotguns Teddy in actor's director like Katselas...
...of the church since Vatican II...
...I felt exactly like the Misfit and I gave her a take a bath for it...
...To "A," 14 December 19571 13 April 1979: 217 "The burden of the book is taken up with ff off for you but I think it is no wonder it instructive: "One never writes for a subthe struggles for the boy's soul between didn't since you see everything in terms tle reader...
...Do you take Commonweal...
...I think you folks sometimes "born-variety" of Catholic write: "With critics, "Every story is a frog in a bottle strain the soup too thin...
...tion which renders images of the real self REVIEWERS The National Catholic Reporter Pub- and of others weak and empty...
...Bernard Lee, "Propositions of God: A Process Sacramentolthe artist...
...I have never been anywhere but sick...
...Candy Clark...
...Remember what they said to John at the gate, darlTRUTH AND EMOTION ing'" It was not my floor but I got off and I suppose the But I can never agree with you that the Incarnation, or old lady was astounded at how quick I could get away on any truth, has to satisfy emotionally to be right (and I crutches...
...She de- some English teacher would write and between the way a convert and the spised strained analyses, saying of such ask me why...
...University of San Francisco, Which brings us to O'Connor's San Francisco, CA 94117 humor, deeply rooted in Southern manners and in a profound appreciation of the grotesque...
...The successful applicant will cultural and political health...
...letters alone would commend the volume...
...I am once of gleaming eye and said in a loud voice, "Bless you, those people who could die for his religion easier than darling...
...O'Connor's development as a ogy...
...An old lady got on the elevator behind me and as About the Lourdes business...

Vol. 106 • April 1979 • No. 7


 
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