The Pennsylvania Updike

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Richard G. Androne


The centrality of Pennsylvania, and especially of his native Berks County, in author John Updike’s life, literary achievement, and ultimate vision comes through vividly in Adam Begley’s biography Updike, Jack De Bellis’s more specialized study John Updike’s Early Years, and James Plath’s collection of Updike’s Pennsylvania interviews, many of which were done in Updike’s home county. Until he was eighteen and left for Harvard, Updike said, “there were hardly twenty days that I didn’t spend in Pennsylvania,” and while after that departure he no longer lived in Berks County for an extended period, he said, “though I left Pennsylvania, Pennsylvania has never left me.

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