Revolutionary Road (Movie Tie-in Edition) (Vintage Contemporaries)

Revolutionary Road - Richard Yates Revolutionary Road was published in 1961 and is a remarkably insightful novel, perhaps as much proto-feminist as it is pre-postmodernist. The book is so honestly told that it reads as much a product of our time as one of the past, and with the compulsion to put the novel to film, 47 years after it was written, it becomes the backward-pointing finger to which all manner of contemporary family tragedies in American can be ascribed. The novel, then prescient, is now, to us, satisfyingly prophetic, for it is evidence of what Americans should have suspected all along: there is no challenge to find failed hopes within a marriage bound in suburbia; there is no challenge to see the sacrifice of a masculine identity, or the narrow limitations put to femininity, in the veneer of pressure-driven appearances. The ideas are so obviously in-tune with modern perceptions that you wonder how anyone might ever have believed there to be the opportunity for hope in this landscape. So looking askance at our casually jaded 21st century viewpoint, you are left to wonder what would it be to find a novel whose truth is in a war won for marriage and family. Or is it that the life is always a compromise? Does it always ring false?This novel would have been well-born alongside The Cider House Rules as it was any John Cheever: Americans are quick to believe their own mythologies, but slow to acknowledge these same stories when they exist as everyday fact. That this novel was resurrected by the film industry shouldn’t be surprising; that it was published at the time it was written should be more an embarrassment to the wholesale subscription to the ideals against which this novel so clearly, and cleverly, rails, and perhaps even against our self-congratulatory stylization of it, as if we were (or are) so quick so recognize our faults as they occurred.