How does one advise one’s 11-year-old daughter about life? How did one of the 20th century’s greatest writers advise his little girl? Read more

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We read, as the 17th century English poet John Dryden told us, “for instruction and delight”. We read, as the Victorian novelist George Eliot said, because “art is the nearest thing to life”. What that means, the critic Louis Bayard explains, is that “to approach the mystery of our own condition, we have to grasp the mystery by which words make worlds”. Read more

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