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176 Western American Literature ing two or three characters whose lives in the mountains are laden with human significance. From Boone Caudill’s struggles with the hobbles of society, his commitment to violence, and his inex­ pressible awe at the beauty and freedom of the West, to Jim Deakins ’ struggle to fathom the nature of God in the universe and Dick Summer’s confrontation with old age, this book assumes a universality of human interest and significance which enables it to sweep beyond the “merely historical” or “merely regional” labels. So artistically does A. B. Guthrie fuse the historical and the fictional, the realistic and the romantic, the mundane and the philosophical that we might say of The Big Sky what Boone says to Jim concerning his initial impression of life in the West: “Goddam, Jiml . . . It’s slick, ain’t it?”64 “ Big Sky, p .127. About the Authors Richard H. Cracroft (Ph.D., University of Wisconsin) is assistant Pro­ fessor of English at Brigham Young University. He has published in American Quarterly, Modern Fiction Studies, The American West, Dialogue, BYU Studies, and several other journals. David Stineback (Ph.D., Yale) is in the Department of English, Union College. He is editing and completing an introduction for a new edition of Charles Brockden Brown’s Edgar Huntly (College 8c University Press). He also has an article on Willa Cather’s The Professor’s House accepted for publi­ cation by Arizona Quarterly. Barbara Meldrum (Ph.D., Claremont Graduate School) is Associate Pro­ fessor of English and Director of Graduate Programs in English at University of Idaho. She has published in Studies in the Novel and Research Studies (Mel­ ville articles) and is currently writing a book on S. K. Winther. Anthony T . Wadden (Ph.D., University of Iowa) is Assistant Professor of English at Gonzaga University. He has one previous publication on Downing in the April 1968 issue of Books at Iowa. No information was available on Donald E. Houghton. ...


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