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Updated 10 January 2006

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Anderson, Sherwood.  "Four American Impressions." The New Republic  
  XXXII (11 Oct.1922):  171-73.

Biography/General Criticism

Short story writer Anderson offers a personal as well as a professional appraisal of Lardner, Gertrude Stein, Paul Rosenfeld, and Sinclair Lewis.

Anderson stresses Lardner's shyness and his sensitivity; says he shows "more understanding of life, more human sympathy, more salty wisdom" in a paragraph "than in hundreds of pages of say, Mr. Sinclair Lewis's dreary prose" (171), and also observes that Lardner does not find the modern world "altogether barren and ugly" (172) as does Lewis; compares Lardner favorably with Mark Twain.

     
---. "Meeting Ring Lardner." The New Yorker 25 Nov. 1933: 36,38.  Rpt. in
  No Swank.  Mamoroneck NY:  Paul P. Appel, 1970.   1-7.

Biography

Vividly describes two meetings with Lardner and Lardner's friend Grantland Rice during the Mardi Gras (probably 1926); depicts Lardner as an admirable yet enigmatic character, who usually hid behind masks, either that of the drunken entertainer, or a stoic Midwesterner.

Though Anderson often seems too interested in proving his thesis that Lardner hid behind masks, his impressions of Lardner are memorable and thought provoking.   Anderson describes the first meeting in a small restaurant in the French Quarter as pleasant.  The waiters and seemingly all others who come in contact with Lardner want to please him.  Anderson counts himself among those who have a "warm affection" (2) and protective feeling for Lardner.  The second meeting takes place two days later.  Lardner calls Anderson on the way from one party to the next.   Anderson meets him at a party "in a swell house in a swell part of town" (4).  When Anderson arrives, Ring is entertaining the crowd by singing and playing the piano.  Later Lardner introduces Anderson to various guests as the author of The Great Gatsby, Tess of the d'Urbervilles, or Moby Dick (5).   Lardner tells Anderson to get some bottles and meet him outside.  Anderson does so, but Ring arrives with the host of the party they have just left.  The host, a banker, is afraid to ask to come along, and Ring is afraid to ask him to come along.   The two stand awkwardly, and Anderson watches Lardner's mask slip for a moment.

     
Benchley, Robert C.  "The Fate of the Funny Men."  Rev. of Say It With
  Oil, by Ring Lardner. Bookman LVII (June, 1923):  455-57.

Review/General Criticism

Begins with a fable of three funny men intended "to indicate a danger which may result in the general extinction of American humor through quantity production" (456).  Lardner's book is used as an example of a story written to please a magazine editor, not the author.  Despite the writer's opinion that the piece is uninspired, he maintains that it is very funny anyway and that "even magazine editors can't kill Mr. Lardner" (457).

In the fable which begins this review, three humorists are "contenders for the mantle of Mark Twain" (455).  The first is ruined by a newspaper editor who wants him to be funny every day of the year and in a way that appeals to a mass audience.   The second is ruined by a magazine editor who has all sorts of funny ideas of his own for the humorist to write about.  The third tries to write for himself, but he too writes too often in order to feed his family.  He is ultimately seized by "the Spirit of Service" (456), wanting to show his serious side to the world.   In the review, though Benchley says the story is not intended to apply literally to the writers he mentions, H. I. Phillips is identified as the first humorist, Gelett Burgess and Ellis Parker Butler are identified as the third humorist, and Lardner is the second, albeit with many qualifications.  Benchley says that the book is funny and that Lardner has put "more laughs in it than you will find in the collected works of any other humorist" (457).  That said, Benchley wishes aloud that Lardner would work on other projects rather than "trying to rewrite something that editors have been suggestion to funny men for hundreds of years" (457).  This response to Lardner--that he is great but he could use his talent in better ways--followed Lardner throughout his career (see "Ring" by F. Scott Fitzgerald, for example).

     
Berryman, John.  "The Case of Ring Lardner." Commentary XXII (Nov.
  1956):  416-23.

Review/General Criticism

In response to the publication of Elder's biography, which he characterizes as wordy but "surprisingly candid for a work produced so soon after its subject's death, and under the continuous assistance of his surviving family" (417), Berryman tries to separate Lardner the celebrity from Lardner the writer; offers a concise review of Lardner's life and works; advances the viewpoint that Lardner's best work is the "accident of talent" (422), that he lacked "purposefulness," and serious skills necessary to be considered as an artist.  

The article begins with a general statement about the nature and role of the artist and critic in America and the sometimes difficult task the critic faces in determining who exactly is an artist before criticism can be given.  In America, says Berryman, serious artists pretend to be common folk and popular entertainers pretend to be artists (416-417).  Berryman next summarizes Donald Elder's book, Ring Lardner (417-419).  He concludes that Lardner's biography shows a man without "purposefulness" and "drive toward expression" (419), those qualities which would make him a candidate for consideration as an artist.  Using "The Love Nest" as a "random" example, Berryman sets out to investigate Lardner's characters.   After summarizing the story, Berryman concludes that it is "trite and implausible" (420), displaying "gross carelessness, indifference" and points out some inconsistencies in Celia's behavior and the reactions of Bartlett and Gregg.  His opinion of the dialogue is not much better.   Finally, he says that the message of the story, the thing it exposes, namely that big producers don't have happy marriages, is a revelation to no one but "boobs" (431).    As to other stories, "Harmony" is "one of his few affecting and well constructed [of the baseball] stories" (421); and "Haircut" and "The Golden Honeymoon" are Lardner's two best.   Oddly, Berryman does not feel it necessary to discuss these "good" stories with the same depth and enthusiasm as he does for the story he considers bad.   To him, these good stories are accidents of talent.  According to Berryman, Lardner will not be remembered as a humorist because the stuff of humor is ephemeral.   Nor is Lardner a short story writer of note because "[h]e had no invention, little imagination, a very limited sense of style, and almost no sense of structure" (422).  His satire is "unimportant" (422) because Lardner does not possess "imagination of a different past or future condition for the object satirized" (422).  On comparisons made by other writers, says Lardner compares to Swift only in bitterness (422).  He does concede that Lardner has talents for "mimicry, burlesque, parody" (422) and for "what looks like nonsense" (422).  He singles out Clemo Uti--"The Water Lilies" as his favorite of the nonsense plays, but says that the genius shown in such plays is not developed further in "more confident studies or irrelation" (422). 

     
Bibesco, Elizabeth.  "Lament for Lardner." Living Age CCCXXXXV (Dec.,
  1933):  366-68.

General Criticism

A full reprint from London's Week-end Review.  Holds that Lardner made a "devastating" indictment of American civilization, is taken too lightly by critics who confuse "complication with profundity," and that he is a greater artist than Sinclair Lewis.

Bibesco begins her essay with her account of reading the news that Ring Lardner has died.  She finds herself saddened and though she didn't know him personally, she has a sense of "personal shock" (366).  She then explains why she feels he is undervalued as a writer.  The response to Lardner is a class issue as much as a talent issue.  To Bibesco, Lardner offers an "indictment of American civilization . . . devastating in its flat, unemphatic finality" (367).  She sees Lardner's world as having "no redemption," "no souls," revealing "invulnerable barrenness of lives unlit by any vision" (367) ("I know nothing more devastating than the icy drip of Mr. Lardner's writing" (367)) .   She compares his dialogue favorably to Chekhov's and his satire favorably to Sinclair Lewis's (the main difference in her mind being that Lardner maintains a distance from the targets of his satire, but Lewis is too close to his characters, simultaneously championing and attacking his characters).  In closing, she predicts that Lardner will "forever elude criticism and defeat imitation" (368).   

     
Blythe, Hal. "Lardner's 'Haircut.'" Explicator 44.3 (Spring 1986):  48-49.
  Explication ("Haircut")

Blythe takes a look at the significance of the cinematic allusions in "Haircut."

Blythe analyzes cinematic allusions, especially those to the movie Wages of Death found in the story "Haircut" and asserts that the plot of that movie is the hidden plot of this story (essentially that a group of people create an alibi for a sympathetic killer).  In this article, unlike the next, Blythe still supports the view that the narrator of "Haircut" is innocent and unaware of the real circumstances surrounding Jim's death.

     
Blythe, Hal and Charlie Sweet.  "The Barber of Civility:  The Chief
  Conspirator of 'Haircut.'" Studies in Short Fiction 23.4 (Fall 1986): 450-453.

Explication ("Haircut")

As the title suggests, Blythe and Sweet set out to prove that the barber/narrator is the mastermind and chief conspirator of Jim's death in "Haircut."

Blythe and Sweet posit that Whitey, the narrator, is not only aware of what is going on in the story and that he condones the killing of Jim, but that he is "the chief instigator of the town's deadly conspiracy" (451).  They methodically support their thesis, using many examples from the story to establish motive, means, opportunity, and indirect admissions of guilt.  Such a reading requires that one considers the barber's comments about Jim (like his being a "card") to be intentionally ironic.  The "motive to kill" may also be overstated. Whitey has a motive for revenge or a motive to dislike Jim, but the motive to kill is not established here.

     
Blythe, Hal and Charlie Sweet.  "Lardner's Haircut."  The Explicator  55
  (Summer 1997):  219-221.

Explication ("Haircut")

Continuing their earlier argument that the barber/narrator is the chief conspirator of Jim's death, Blythe and Sweet now explore the barber's motivation in telling his self-incriminating story.  Their earlier suggestion that "hubris" is the motive is dismissed; "guilt" causes the barber to "confess" his story.  

After reiterating their reasons for believing that Whitey, the barber/narrator, is "the chief instigator of the town's deadly conspiracy," Blythe and Sweet admit their earlier explanation for the barber telling his story is inadequate.  They posit that Whitey tells his story out of guilt.  Central to their argument is their interpretation of a scene in which the barber explains how things used to be in the barbershop.  When Jim was still living, he sat at his reserved chair like a priest, and thus, they argue, the barbershop was a secular church.  "Haircut" is a "confession."  Only two are in the "church," and the barber is confessing his sin. 

     
Boomhower, Ray.  "Covering the Bases." Michigan History Magazine  
  May/June 1996:  20-27.

Biography

Biographical account of Lardner's early career in sports writing.

The article begins with an account of pitcher Ed Reulbach (Notre Dame, Chicago Cubs) meeting Ring as a would-be waterboy and as a reporter.  The rest draws on general biographical information and the autobiographical articles Ring wrote for The Saturday Evening Post to restate the Lardner legend, from Niles, through South Bend, to Chicago.  Most notable is a reprint of a dialect letter (25) which appeared in the 1917 edition of the University of Notre Dame's yearbook, the Dome.

     
Bordewyk, Gordon.  "Comic Alienation: Ring Lardner's Style." Markham
  Review 11 (Spring 1982):  51-57.

Criticism

Bordewyk studies Lardner's use of dialogue, but goes beyond the standard discussion of authenticity and related issues by connecting the communication problems of Lardner's characters with their alienation. 

Following Howard Webb's lead in the study of non-communication in Lardner's fiction, Bordewyk puts together a logical and well supported argument which first establishes that Lardner's "characters use or abuse language according to a consistent pattern" (51), and then that the pattern "signals an individual's estrangement in society" (51).  Bordewyk identifies "four types of communication failures that contribute to alienation" (51) that are demonstrated by Lardner's characters:   first, those who suffer from "inarticulateness" which leads to despair or violence ("My Roomy" is used as an example (51-52)); second, those who are "excessively literal," unable to understand others' subtlety (Jack Keefe provides the example for this type (52-53)); third, those who use language as a "social tool," talking but never listening (Miss Lyons in "Zone of Quiet" (53-54), Hazel Dignan in "Travelogue" (54), and Miss Rell in "Dinner" (54-55) provide the examples); and fourth,  those who use "deceptive language" to fool others or to conceal faults ("Horseshoes," "I Can't Breathe," and "Champion" are briefly mentioned as illustrating this type (55); "Alibi Ike," (55), Celia Gregg in "The Love Nest" (55-56), and "Haircut" (56-57) provide more in-depth examples). 

     
Boyd, Thomas.  "Lardner Tells Some New Ones."  Rev. of How to Write
  Short Stories, by Ring Lardner. Bookman LIX (July, 1924):  601-2.

Review

Praises the accuracy of the language used to present characters and the troubling humor of the stories that "leave you silent and thoughtful long after the merriment is gone" (602).

Boyd addresses the effect Lardner's humor and accurate portrayal of language has on his stories, concluding that these things create a "perfect style" (602), essential to the telling of these individual's tales.  He singles out "The Golden Honeymoon" ("every word, every abbreviation is a revelation of this old man") and "Some Like Them Cold" ("It evokes a greater feeling of the uncertainty of existence and of active sympathy than all of Charlie Chaplin's pathetic shoes") as example of stories made that are great because of the Lardner style (602).    "The Champion," which Boyd considers to be the only un-funny story in the collection ("born under a cloud of indignation"), fails in his eyes because of the lack of the normal Lardner style:  ". . . that very honesty results in the lack of verisimilitude at the close" (602).  

     
Bruccoli, Matthew J.  "Five Notes on Ring Lardner." Papers of the
  Bibliographical Society of America 58 (1964):  297-298.

Scholarship

     
---. "Ring Lardner's First Book." Papers of the Bibliographical Society of
  America 58 (1964):  34-35.

Scholarship

     
Cervo, Nathan.  "Lardner's 'Haircut.'" Explicator 47.2 (Winter 1989): 47-48.
  Explication ("Haircut")

Cervo posits that Lardner uses proper nouns as thematic puns "to reflect important themes in the narrative" of "Haircut;" and that by studying these, the reader can determine that Jim was a conspirator in his own murder (suicide).   While many of the individual "puns" Cervo discovers in the text are both convincing and illuminating, the overall theory/interpretation is interesting but unproven. 

Cervo's careful reading of the text results in many fascinating discoveries and  a thought-provoking interpretation.  First, Cervo identifies what he terms "thematic nomenclature," "proper names [used] to reflect important themes in ["Haircut"]."  Several such words are brought to light; particularly convincing are the cases made for "whitewashing," reflecting the town's urge to cover up its dirty secrets, for the title, emphasizing Whitey's fashioning of the story,  and for the final line, "Comb it Wet or dry?" signifying the two ways of interpreting the barber's story (47).  Less convincing are the cases for the phrase "the dark of the stairs" as a pun on Doc Stair (47-48) and for the Paul/"pall" pun (48).  

Cervo uses these puns to support his thesis that in the story, Jim, Paul and Doc Stair "converge their wills, independent one of the other, to murder Jim" (47).   The motives for each of the three are well presented, but, after all is said, there is still room for reasonable doubt.  The pun that is supposed to seal the case, Jim Kendall's name (Kendall = ken + all = knows all) seems to be a bit of a stretch.      

     
Chamberlain, John.  "Ring Lardner Listens in on the Life About Him."  Rev.
  of Round Up, by Ring Lardner.  New York Times Book Review 7 April 1929: 2.

Review/General Criticism

Chamberlain compares Lardner to his contemporaries and calls him one of the "most adroit and profound creators of character" and "our best short story writer."

Though it seems at time much more of a sales pitch than a serious review, Chamberlain's article is valuable in that it represents one type of response to Lardner's work and also in that it offers a number of surprising comparisons.  Chamberlain compares Lardner to several contemporary writers.  For example, while reading Lardner "one always knows that he is on the side of intelligence and civilization" unlike when one reads Hemingway or Anderson.  He considers Lardner more humane than Hemingway without being too preachy like Anderson.  Lardner knows what he is writing about, he employs a number of different techniques, he provides a balanced point-of-view, and he writes about characters from a wide variety of backgrounds.  In short, "Lardner is pre-eminently our best short-story writer."  He briefly mentions a number of stories:  "The Facts" and "Champion" (examples of "straight" stories), "The Golden Honeymoon" (his best:  ". . . one is constantly on the lookout for satire, for kidding, but all one finds is the story of every successful marriage plus some startling characterization"), "The Love Nest" (example of Lardner's portrayal of the ritual of self-delusion:   "Lardner understands ritual as well as Marcel Proust"), "Anniversary," "Mr. Frisbie," and "I Can't Breathe" (examples of hypocrisy revealed), "There Are Smiles," "Old Folk's Christmas," and "Anniversary" (the best of the new stories), and "My Roomy" (which he reads somehow as a "burlesque").

     
Cowlishaw, Brian T.  "The Readers Role in Ring Lardner's Rhetoric"
  Studies in Short Fiction 31.2 (Spring 1994):  207-216.

Reader-Response Criticism

Cowlishaw presupposes that readers interpret Lardner stories in a generally consistent pattern, and uses reader response theory to determine the reason for this. Using the stories of Round Up as his representative sample, Cowlishaw constructs two different interpretive models: one for the third person narratives, and one for the first-person narratives.

In the third-person stories, the implied author and narrator are virtually the same. This author/narrator and the implied reader/narratee form an alliance of superiority over the characters in the stories (thus the "lessons" of the satire are clear). Using "Zone of Quiet" as an example, he clearly demonstrates how in this as in many Lardner stories, "[t]he end is satire; the means, irony" (211).

In the first-person stories, "the rhetorical dynamic is significantly different" (212). The narrators are diverse, eliciting various responses and levels of sympathy. No longer are the implied author and implied reader in direct partnership against the characters. Instead, there is a sort of three-part coalition (though not necessarily composed of three equal members) of the implied author, implied reader and narratees which experiences various degrees of closeness with the narrator and characters. Three stories are used to illustrate the varying degrees of closeness between the "coalition" and the characters: "Haircut," distance and disgust; "Golden Honeymoon," mixed judgment; and "The Facts," closeness and sympathy.


 

     
Diedrick, James. "Ring Lardner's Michigan." Michigan History Mar./Apr. 1985: 32-39.
  Connects the writer to his home state through evidence of influence on his writing and examples primarily from his newspaper columns. Written by one of the organizers of the1985 Lardner Symposium at Albion College.
     
---. "Ring Lardner's 'New' Journalism." Arete 3.1 (Fall 1985): 107-119.
   
     
Douglas, Donald. "Ring Lardner As Satirist." Rev. of The Love Nest and Other Stories, by
  Ring Lardner. The Nation CXXII (26 May 1926): 584-85.

This review is full of praise for Lardner, sees the stories in the Love Nest and the world revealed within them as "a tragedy to the man who thinks."

     
Evans, Elizabeth. "Opulent Vulgarity: Ring Lardner and F. Scott Fitzgerald." Notes on
  Contemporary Literature 10.1 (1980): 2-3.
     
---. "Ring Lardner's Bridge-Playing Spoil Sports." Notes on Contemporary Literature 11.1
  (Jan. 1981): 5-8.

Takes a serious look at Lardner's use of games in his fiction; how bridge is used to show the disparity between what is and what should be, and how something as simple as a game can point out all the ugliness that accompanies the zeal for social advancement.

     
Everett, Barbara. "The New Style of Sweeney Agonistes." Yearbook of English Studies 14
  (1984): 242-263. Also in "Parts of Books."
     
Fadiman, Clifton. "Pitiless Satire." Rev. of Round Up, by Ring Lardner. Nation CXXVIII (1
  May 1929): 536-37.

A first statement of the viewpoint more fully developed in "The Triangle of Hate," that Lardner "is the deadliest because the coldest of American writers," and that his characters form a "democracy of snobs, fools, and moral cowards."

     
---. "Ring Lardner and the Triangle of Hate." Nation CXXXVI (22 Mar. 1933): 315-17.
  An entertaining and often quoted essay which takes the extreme view that "the special force of Ring Lardner's work springs from a single fact: he just doesn't like people." Fadiman posits, with very little evidence, that Lardner hated himself, hated his characters, and that his characters hated each other.
     
Farrell, James T. "Ring Lardner's success Mad World." New York Times Book Review June
  1944: 3,18. Rep. as "Ring Lardner's Round Up."The League of Frightened Philistines and Other Papers. New York: The Vanguard Press, 1945.

An interesting discussion of the intense competitiveness of Lardner's characters as it relates to the competitive American capitalist system.

     
Fitzgerald, F. Scott. "Ring." The New Republic LXXVI (11 Oct. 1933): 254-55.
  Eulogizes Lardner as a talented and good man, but one whose work fell short of its promise because he had a "cynical attitude towards his work," was too limited by baseball, and failed to get personal.
     
Flannigan, John T. "A Student of Literature Looks at History." Michigan History 34,3
  (Sep.1947): 257-66. Gives brief mention of Lardner as one link in the history of American satire.
     
Freese, Peter. "Zwei unbekannte Verweise in J.D. Salinger's The Catcher in the Rye: Charles .
  Dickens und Ring Lardner." Archiv fur das Studium der Neueren Sprachen und Literaturen 211 (1974): 68-72
     
Gilead, Sarah. "Lardner's Discourses of Power." Studies in Short Fiction 22.3 (Summer
  1985): 331-337.

Discusses the power relationships, the "inequal exchanges between speakers and hearers, writers and readers, narrators and narratees" found in Lardner's fiction; establishes a correlation between the literacy of the characters and their power.

     
Gugliemo, Wagner J. "Ring Lardner and 'The Battle of the Century.'" Markham Review 14
  (Fall/Winter 1984-85): 12-15.

Account of the history of as well as analysis of "The Battle of the Century."

     
Hampton, Riley V. "Owl Eyes in The Great Gatsby." American Literature: A Journal of
  Literary History, Criticism, and Bibliography 48 (1976): 229.
     
Hart, John E. "Man as Thing: Ring Lardner's You Know Me Al." South Dakota Review 23.1
  (1985): 114-22.

Skillful character analysis of Jack Keefe; focuses on his myopic worldview and his use by others as a commodity.

     
Hasley, Louis. "Ring Lardner: The Ashes of Idealism." Arizona Quarterly 26 (1970): 219-32.
  Overview of Lardner's life and career; makes important divisions in Lardner's career (the humorous stage, the satiric stage, and the nihilistic stage); overall, considers Lardner's tone to be optimistic.
     
Hicks, James E. "Ring Lardner, Baseball, and Japan: More Evidence in Support of Crepeau's
  Thesis." Arete 3.1 (Fall 1985): 121-123.
     
Jones, David A. and Leverett T. Smith, Jr. "Jack Keefe and Roy Hobbs: Two All-American
  Boys." Aethlon 6.2 (Spring 1989): 119-137.
     
Kasten, Margaret C. "The Satire of Ring Lardner." English Journal XXXVI (April 1947):
  194-95.

Argues against Fadiman's "Triangle of Hate" theory and the opinion that Lardner is "just a comic;" compares Lardner favorably to Sinclair Lewis, and gives examples of college Freshmen's opinions of "Haircut." It is interesting to see that as early as1947 people had already begun to miss the satire in Lardner's stories.

     
Lardner, James. "Ring Lardner at 100--Facing a Legacy." The New York Times Book Review
  31 March 1985: 3,27.

James reflects on the life and work of his grandfather, Ring Lardner and describes the Ring Lardner Centennial Conference held at Albion College as well as a side trip to Niles.

     
Lardner, Ring. "'Great Neck Is Like a Cemetery': Ring Lardner to Thomas Boyd."
  Fitzgerald-Hemingway Annual 1979: 231-32.

A letter.

     
Lardner, Ring Jr. "Ring Lardner & Sons." Esquire March 1972: 98-103, 169-180.
  Lays the groundwork for his family biography.
     
Lease, Benjamin. "An Evening at the Scott Fitzgeralds': An Unpublished Letter of Ring
  Lardner." English Language Notes 8 (1970): 40-42.
     
---. "An Experiment in the Vernacular: An Unpublished Letter of Ring Lardner. American
  Speech: A Quarterly of Linguistic Usage 53 (1978): 236-37.
     
Lindsey, Jack L. "Lynford Lardner's Silver" The Magazine Antiques April 1993: 608-615.
  Historical piece about the first Lardner to come to America. Draws on a number of private and public historical documents to construct a vivid and interesting picture of the man and his times. Excellent photographs.
     
Linneman, William R. "Ring Around the Peninsula." The Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings Journal
  of Florida Literature. 7 (1996): 41-56.
     
Littell, Robert. "Ring Lardner." Rev. of How to Write Short Stories, by Ring Lardner. The
  New Republic 3 Sep. 1924: 25-26. Praises Lardner's handling of the American idiom and American thought.
     
---. ". . . And Other Stories." Review of The Love Nest and Other Stories, by Ring Lardner.
  The New Republic 29 Sep. 1926: 147-49.

Presents an amusing dialogue between R. L. (the author and critic) and S. S. V. (still small voice, the common reader) in order to present the views of both of Lardner's audiences.

     
Matheson, Terence J. "Impressionists, Satirists, Radicals, and Romantics: Investigating the .
  Eccentric Response." Canadian Review of American Studies 14.3 (Fall 1983): 321-331
     
Matthews, T.S. "Lardner, Shakespeare and Chekhov." The New Republic 22 May 1929: .
  35-36.

Compares Lardner with the others on the basis that all three had both a serious and a popular audience

     
May, Charles. "Lardner's HAIRCUT." Explicator 31.9 (May 1973).
  Suggests that the object of the satire in "Haircut" is not just Jim or the small town in which he lives, but it is the reader who so quickly condones such extreme punishment.
     
Mencken, Henry L. "A Humorist Shows His Teeth." The American Mercury Jun. 1926:
  354-55. Commentary on The Love Nest and Other Stories which commends Lardner for his use of the American language.
     
Moseley, Merritt. "Ring Lardner and the American Humor Tradition." South Atlantic Review
  46.1 (Jan. 81): 42-60.
     
Mulder, Arnold. "Michigan's Writing Men." Michigan History Sep. 1951: 257-270.
   
     
   

 

 






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