chapter  X
17 Pages

Thomas Wolfe's Quest for a Real Self—Partial Fulfillment

WithChapter XI. Discussion and Summary 167

On the brink of this next, most dramatic and important turning point of Thomas Wolfe's life, let us pause for a moment to consider the personality of this now fully grown young man.

He was 6'5" tall, garrulous, and spoke with a lisp. He had dramatic mood swings from states of euphoria to the blackest of depression. Though physically awkward and without conventional social skills, he had the capacity to draw other people into providing for him what he was unable to do for himself. In ad.- dition to his few symbiotic attachments, over the years he amassed an extraordinary range of people throughout western Europe and the United States who on his travels were prepared to be his

caretaker-as long as the relationship was not longstanding and intimate, he was able to manage it.