Polemicist and Cultural Diagnostician
DOI link for Polemicist and Cultural Diagnostician
Polemicist and Cultural Diagnostician book
The Irving Howe whom Ted Solotaroff had identified in July 1964 in Commentary as “the radical thinker and publicist” assumed center-stage during the next decade. As a result, the perception of what Solotaroff had termed a “good marriage” between the “two Howes” faded at Commentary and elsewhere. During this third phase of Howe’s reputation (1966-1976), the “socialist” Howe became a controversial figure for his passionately immoderate style of moderation. His status within intellectual and left-wing circles soon peaked and then fell dramatically; at the same time, his brief détente with Commentary fizzled and he became a declared enemy of the nascent neoconservative movement by the mid-1970s. Meanwhile, Howe the man of letters commanded increasing respect; his reputation as both a literary essayist and a scholar-critic of Jewish secular culture continued to rise.