December 2023

Daniel J. Boorstin, The Creators
Subtitled A History of Heroes of the Imagination this book provides a guide to the development of the arts that begins with Hinduism, Confucianism, Buddhism, and the Greeks, and passes through human history on its way to our contemporary moment.

Short Stories
Guy de Maupassant, Letter Found on a Drowned Man Very disappointing story where the first half frames the second, which recounts a date on a boat that ends with what the man believes is a moment of profound significance being spoiled by the woman noticing a caterpillar in his hair. The end of the story adds a note that what has preceded it was the contents of a letter found in the pocket of a man fished out of the Seine (which makes no sense, did this man write the section framing his story?)
The Infant
Another poor effort. A widower remarries and has a child, the second wife dying in childbirth. This child's father is actually another man. These two both spoil the child rotten; the action, such as it is, concerns Celeste, the family servant, trying to intervene and, after attempting to force-feed the boy soup, the widower grabs her and she announces the child's true parentage. The man then retires to his room and hangs himself, entrusting the child in his suicide note to his true father.