Month 10: Miss Lonelyhearts and The Day of the Locust

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I devoured these 2 short stories in one afternoon at the beginning of October, but it took an entire month to think of what to say about them, of course. In short, I enjoyed both of Nathanael West’s stories.

Both pieces of fiction take place in the Great Depression, one in Los Angeles and one in New York. The way the respective cities and the cultures they bear are portrayed is fascinating. How little the tropes have changed, even 80 years later! Both stories center around characters at the fringes of society, who are working to find their place. The blanket of the Depression touches, but does not preclude, their existence. As a window into life in America in the ’30s, it is heartbreaking but captivating.