- What is an “editorial novelist”?
- What do “dude” and “literary dude” mean in the following passages?
All are mentioned in the New Yorker article “Easy Writers” by Arthur Krystal (21 May 2012):
Chandler wasn’t pleased. “Literature is bunk,” he retorted, propagated by “fancy boys, clever-clever darlings, stream-of-consciousness ladies and gents, and editorial novelists”—in other words, a bunch of literary dudes.
“He [Mathew Arnold] will not be missed,” Whitman told a friend. Arnold reaffirmed all that was “rich, hefted, lousy, reeking with delicacy, refinement, elegance, prettiness, propriety, criticism, analysis.” He was, in short, “one of the dudes of literature.” Whitman probably figured that his own gnarly hirsuteness would save him from becoming a dude. He was wrong, and therein lies a lesson for all hardworking scribblers: stick around long enough, develop a cult following, gain the approval of one or two literary dudes (in Whitman’s case: Henry James, Ezra Pound, and F. O. Matthiessen), and you, too, can become respectable.”
It seems that Chandler and Whitman, as well as the writer of the article, have used “dude” as a disparaging term. If so, what does it (dude and literary dude) mean in this context?
Furthermore, if (literary) dude is disparaging or derogatory, how can it be applied to literary figures like Whitman and Henry James and Ezra Pound and F. O. Matthiessen (in The New Yorker article)?