Donald J. Greiner is professor of English and director of graduate studies at the University of South Carolina. He is the author of Comic Terror: The Novels of John Hawkes, Robert Frost: The Poet and His Critics, two monographs on Frost, and numerous scholarly essays. He is also the editor of The Notebook of Stephen Crane, and the two volume Dictionary of Literary Biography: American Poets Since World War II.
In 1981–82, John Updike turned fifty and published Rabbit Is Rich, the third installment of Updike’s Rabbit chronicle and the tenth novel of his career. The resulting publicity was enormous: a Time cover story; the re-issue of his first book, The Carpentered Hen, originally published in 1958; and three prestigious awards for Rabbit Is Rich—the Pulitzer Prize, the National Book Critics Circle Award, and an American Book Award.
John Updike has won a National Book Award and has earned both critical and popular acclaim. At the moment, his reputation rests largely on his novels, especially Rabbit, Run; The Centaur; Of the Farm; and The Coup. Of his many books, more than half are volumes of poems, stories, essays and reviews, and one play, yet the numerous critical books on Updike concentrate primarily on his long fiction with the result that over one half of his canon is often ignored.