by Norman Podhoretz, introduction by Terry Teachout
The Family responded to the book with outrage, and Podhoretz soon turned no less angrily on them, becoming the fierce neoconservative he remains to this day. Fifty years after its first publication, this controversial and legendary book remains a riveting autobiography, a book that can be painfully revealing about the complex convictions and needs of a complicated man as well as a fascinating and essential document of mid-century American cultural life.
A frank and honest book...high-stepping brilliance...tactfully and touchingly revealing of the fearful ambitions of Podhoretz’s family.... Podhoretz has ‘allowed himself to be fully known’ and so may give the key to the B.Y.M. (Bright Young Men) of the next generation, which will allow them to shuck the iron mask of premature intellectual good taste and join in the common pursuit of self-knowledge and self-expression.
—Frederic Raphael, The New York Times
This masterpiece of American autobiography is the tale of a striving, self-mythologized, and nearly Melvillean figure crashing toward his own salvation—and more.... Nearly 50 years on, it’s clear that, to paraphrase Dostoevsky on Gogol, we all come out from Podhoretz’s overcoat.
—Lee Smith, Tablet
As a work of sociology, it’s surely one of the most important books any American has produced on what William James called 'the bitch-goddess SUCCESS,' the national worship of whom 'is our national disease.' As a meditation on writing, there are digressions that an aspirant to the craft would do well to consider...After 50 years and multiple readings, Making It continues to dazzle.
—Ian Tuttle, National Review
One can’t really understand the state of so-called highbrow culture today without first coming to terms with the career of Norman Podhoretz. Along with Jason and Barbara Epstein, Robert Silvers, Susan Sontag, Norman Mailer and a few others (the ‘children’ of Edmund Wilson, Lionel Trilling and Philip Rahv), Mr. Podhoretz reconceived the very idea of what it means to be an intellectual.
—Robert S. Boynton, The New York Observer
Making It was a brave and original book.
—Robert Fulford, The Globe and Mail
Podhoretz’s analysis of the power of the family is penetrating.
—Andrew M. Greeley, The Reporter