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Norman Mailer on Ambition

In 1950, Norman Mailer commented as follows in a letter to William Styron:

I didnt write [The] Naked [and the Dead] because I wanted to say war was horrible, or that history is complex, resistant, and almost inscrutable, or because I wanted to say that the coming battle between the naked fanatics and the dead mass was approaching, but because really what I wanted to say was, Look at me, Norman Mailer, Im alive, Im a genius, I want people to know that; Im a cripple, I want to hide that, and so forth.

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