02.3

From Project Mailer
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“Alarm Calls for American Dreamers.” Article-interview by Christopher Bigsby. Independent (London), 9 February, 10. Revealing interview in which Mailer ranges over his career (he says his three best novels are The Naked and the Dead (48.2), The Executioner’s Song (79.14), and Harlot’s Ghost (91.26)), criticizes American hubris (“if you really love a country, it’s your duty to be critical of it”), talks about his Arthritic knees (“the pain is paying off bad karma on the installment plan”), and tells about living in the same house in Brooklyn as Arthur Miller in the late 1940s (“I know he was thinking what I was, which was, ‘That other guy is never going to amount to anything’”). He also criticizes President Bush, and says that in the wake of 9/11, “When I say it now I know I’m going to have to pay for it, but if you don’t use freedom of speech, it’s like an unused dick. It tends to dwindle.”