"A LEADING FIGURE IN THE CHICAGO LITERARY RENAISSANCE": FIRST EDITION OF SHERWOOD ANDERSON'S WINESBURG, OHIO, INSCRIBED BY HIM
ANDERSON, Sherwood. Winesburg, Ohio. New York: B.W. Huebsch, 1919. Octavo, original yellow cloth, printed paper spine label, cartographic front pastedown. $17,500.
First edition, scarce first issue of "Anderson's first important work, and possibly his finest" (Sheehy & Lohf), "To Florence D. Briscoe, Sherwood Anderson."
Although he had already published two novels and a book of poetry, Anderson did not receive widespread attention until he produced this book, "establishing him as a leading figure in the Chicago literary renaissance" (Stringer, 20). "These stories of small-town people voice the philosophy of life expressed in all his later works. Adopting a naturalistic interpretation of American life, he believed that the primal forces of human behavior are instinctive and not to be denied, as he supposed they are, by the standardization of a machine age" (Hart, 31). Approaching his characters in these stories, Anderson aims to peel away "other people's attitudes to reveal the complexity and potential of the man beneath" (Parker & Kermode, 79). The book was a major influence on Hemingway, Faulkner and Wolfe, and led critic Carl Van Doren to note, "Anderson, who is a poet at heart, is profoundly devoted to the idea that life to be truly good must be mobile and creative, not fixed and obedient." First issue, with unbroken right frame line of title page; "lay" at page 86, line five; broken type in "the" at page 251, line three. Without very rare original dust jacket. Sheehy & Lohf 9. Bruccoli & Clark II:14. Dickinson, 14.
Text generally fine, bright cloth with only mild soiling, toning and a bit of wear to paper spine label. Very desirable inscribed.