By the Sound – Edward Dorn (1965)

1960s: Days of Rage

“One of the things the novel can and often does do for its readers is to extend their range of sympathy, to make them see with a new clarity groups of people that might otherwise be forgotten except in statistical charts, and to make them feel that the individuals inside these groups partake of our common humanity. This is one of the main impulses of writers such as Dreiser, Steinbeck, or Solzhenitsyn, writers who not only want to record certain kinds of social oppression but also want to correct them. They take sides in their novels and openly moralize, preferring compassion and authorial commitment to aesthetic distance, and often they do bring about at least some social change. Such a writer is Edward Dorn in By the Sound. By the Sound was originally called Rites of Passage when it was published in 1965, and now it is re-issued with…

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