review of ‘Free and Other Stories’ – The Dial 12-28-1918
Posted here (downloadable PDF file above) is a review of Dreiser’s Free and Other Stories
The Dial, December 28, 1918
The review makes reference to Dreiser’s novel The “Genius,” which it terms a “ponderous commentary on Weininger’s Sex and Character.” Otto Weininger (1880-1903) was an Austrian philosopher and author of the book Geschlecht und Charakter (Sex and Character). The influence of Weininger on Dreiser in The “Genius” is analyzed in Donald Pizer’s article “Otto Weininger and the Sexual Dynamics of Theodore Dreiser’s The “Genius,” Studies in American Naturalism 3.2 (winter 2008).
An editorial comment: The “Genius,” which is closely based on events in Dreiser’s life, is an uneven book that can be criticized for its muddled views. It did not get a good critical reception, and it is still not well regarded. I found the novel highly readable despite the weak patches and feel it is underrated.
— posted by Roger W. Smith