ROMULUS—WHAT I HOLD AGAINST GORE VIDAL.

ROMULUS—WHAT I HOLD AGAINST GORE VIDAL. Mary Jane saw yesterday’s post and commented; “You’ve always had something against Gore Vidal.” I do. It goes way back. The first Broadway play I saw—on my first trip to New York—was Gore Vidal’s Romulus. It was a huge disappointment. It seemed promising—a play about the last emperor of Rome (Romulus Augustulus, who was deposed in 476)—giving a writer like Vidal the opportunity to write about history and empire and loss.

Thanks to Google, I have found this essay by Vidal about his play, published in Esquire in May, 1962. The essay is full of insights, and confirms that Vidal was well-suited to making Romulus a very good play. I now think that perhaps I have been blaming the wrong person.

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One Response to ROMULUS—WHAT I HOLD AGAINST GORE VIDAL.

  1. One of the things I heard Gore Vidal say has stayed with me for years:
    “The mind must have food, and if it doesn’t get it, the mind will eat itself.”
    I believe I’ve seen that happen.
    Now, I wonder if this has become an expanding phenomenon in the culture of
    Western Civilization. Just thought I’d drop that in there–sort of like a footnote
    I made in a college term paper: See The Golden Bough. No page reference, just the
    whole damned Golden Bough. Or, the whole of Western Civilization.
    After all, this is the age of Gross Generalizations, is it not. The bigger the generalization the more likely to be true, isn’t that how it goes?

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