In a recent interview with the New York Times, British writer Paul Auster spoke to a group of young Americans about his new book, The Real Quote, about his own personal and professional journey in writing, and about the American reading public.
The quote, he said, is “a great source of wisdom”.
“If you go back to the first verse of the first chapter of the book, it’s the most quoted, and the most cited, of any of my books.
And I don’t know why,” Auster said.
“I’m very much a British writer, and I am British, and so I have to take a lot of liberties and go in the opposite direction and try and understand the world from that perspective.”
The quote itself, Auster pointed out, is not original.
“It’s been used since at least the beginning of recorded time, but it was probably used by somebody before that,” Austers said.
The quotation is from the poem The Real Reason, by American writer Charles Dickens, who is considered the first modern American writer to write a poem.
In The Real Question, Dickens, in a story about a father who is divorced from his son and tries to raise his daughter in a family of the same ethnicity, asks: “Why would I not be proud of you, your kind?”
It is one of many references to “the real reason”, a term coined by linguist David Hilbert to describe how the British and American public use words.
“When you’re talking to someone, you’re not just talking about their nationality, you are talking about what the world has been telling you about their national origin,” Austest said.
Auster’s book, set to be published in January, includes a chapter about the quotation.
“The Real Reason” is the first work by Auster that is set in England, and he said the title is inspired by his upbringing.
“My family were really English, and when I was a child, they were like a British family,” Austen said.
He added: “So my mum and dad are actually British.
I don’ like to be called ‘English’, but that’s where I was born.”
Auster is a member of the Royal British Legion, and said he spent his childhood reading and learning the language.
“So I’ve got a very British background, and if you want to be a poet, you have to be able to speak the language, and it’s about being able to write,” he said.
His father died when Auster was in his teens, and Auster now lives in the UK with his family.
“They’re quite a quiet, middle-class family,” he told the Times.
“We have a lovely house in London, so they don’t have a lot to do.
We’re very close to the centre of London.”
Austers father, the British author Arthur Conan Doyle, was born in 1858 in Birmingham.
His parents divorced when Austers age, and his father, a writer, died when he was only nine years old.
“As a child I would go into his library and go and talk to the things I wanted to know about, and that’s when I started to really understand what it meant to be British,” Austerman said.
But Auster says his own upbringing and the language that his father used to write made him very proud of being British.
“That’s what it was about that I got my English and the way that I used to use it,” he explained.
“And the reason I wrote the poem was because of that.”
‘We’re not talking about the British public’ ‘My father was always a very good writer, he was the best, he did the best work that he could, he had all the courage that you can have, and then you learn to work with it,” Austery said.
When Austers mother died when his father was still in his twenties, Austers was a teenager.
After graduating from Oxford University, Austerman went on to receive a master’s degree in English Literature from Oxford and was working as a reporter in New York when he received a letter in 1951. “
He was very good to me,” Austre said.
After graduating from Oxford University, Austerman went on to receive a master’s degree in English Literature from Oxford and was working as a reporter in New York when he received a letter in 1951.
It was a Christmas card from a journalist who had covered Auster.
“There was this beautiful letter from the New Yorker, and they wrote this beautiful poem, and this was the first time that they wrote to me in that sort of language,” Austerson recalled.
“If it was written in the early sixties, it would have been the most beautiful thing that I had ever read.
But it was from the late sixties.
And this was in 1951, and a very old man in a very big suit was writing to me, and there was a lovely little letter.”