Today’s grand Franzen rollout: first Time, then New York, and now Vogue. Whatever his past beef with middlebrow arbiters of female taste, the author (“whose deliberate manner, salt-and-pepper hair, and classic tortoiseshell glasses belie a certain essential boyishness”) turns out to be an ideal Vogue profile subject. Why? Because he cares about competition, capitalism, and ladies:
“I really wanted to write about competition because it’s this fixture of the free market that nobody really wants to talk about. It’s considered unattractive to be competitive, and yet our entire political economy is based on a mechanism of competition. It’s bad enough to be a man and be competitive; it’s even harder to be a woman and be competitive.”
Which one probably could have gleaned from any women’s glossy, if not from Franzen’s ex-girlfriend’s Granta essay.