Adventures of A Young Man

Adventures of a Young Man is a 1939 novel by John Dos Passos, which eventually became the first in this writer's District of Columbia Trilogy.

The novel, which tells of a disillusioned young American radical who fights on the side of the Second Spanish Republic during the Spanish Civil War and is killed during the war, is contemporary with Ernest Hemingway's For Whom the Bell Tolls, with its similar theme. Both books are the outcome of the 1937 visit of Dos Passos and Hemingway to Spain during which their friendship broke up in a sharp quarrel on political as well as personal grounds.

Critic George Packer in The New Yorker deplored the oblivion into which the Dos Passos book had fallen (mainly due to the rightwards political move of its author) and considered it as deserving of enduring fame as Hemingway's novel:

Hemingway’s romantic fable is in almost every way more compelling. But Dos Passos, in his dispirited and unblinking realism, was the one to convey what it meant to be alive in the nineteen-thirties.

Famous quotes containing the words adventures of, young man, man, adventures and/or young:

    I have a vast deal to say, and shall give all this morning to my pen. As to my plan of writing every evening the adventures of the day, I find it impracticable; for the diversions here are so very late, that if I begin my letters after them, I could not go to bed at all.
    Frances Burney (1752–1840)

    Every one knows about the young man who falls in love with the chorus-girl because she can kick his hat off, and his sister’s friends can’t or won’t. But the youth who marries her, expecting that all her departures from convention will be as agile or as delightful to him as that, is still the classic example of folly.
    Katharine Fullerton Gerould (1879–1944)

    Ridicule dishonors a man more than dishonor does.
    François, Duc De La Rochefoucauld (1613–1680)

    The best part of a writer’s biography is not the record of his adventures but the story of his style.
    Vladimir Nabokov (1899–1977)

    There is hardly any contact more depressing to a young ardent creature than that of a mind in which years full of knowledge seem to have issued in a blank absence of interest or sympathy.
    George Eliot [Mary Ann (or Marian)