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The Natural Man by Ed McClanahan

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Wendell Berry writes this about The Natural Man, Ed McClanahan's first novel: "Others have observed the natural man in the American condition before, but nobody has done it with such good humor. Ed McClanahan's good humor both sharpens his eye and gentles his vision. I don't know where else, now, you would find workmanship that is at once so meticulous and so exuberant." Ed McClanahan was born in 1932 in Bracken County on the Ohio River in Eastern Kentucky. His undergraduate degree was from Miami University in Ohio, and he earned a masters from the University of Kentucky. His first teaching job was at the University of Oregon from 1958 until 1962 when he received a prestigious Stegner Fellowship to study at Stanford University. Standford kept him as a professor afterwards, followed by teaching assignments back at U.K. at the University of Montana, and Northern Kentucky University. He credits the fact that NKU did not put him on a tenure track  - perhaps due to his status as an icon of the counter-culture - with his decision to finish his first novel, The Natural Man (1983) which established his reputation as a fiction writer. He has lived in Lexington, Kentucky, ever since.

Frankfort: Gnomon Press, 1983. Trade paperback.