The Ultimate Literary Cage Match: Hemingway vs. Faulkner vs. Trump

April 26, 2016 | 10 books mentioned 3 2 min read

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Who is the greatest American writer? In any such conversation, Ernest Hemingway and William Faulkner must be considered. And when discussing anything both great and American, Donald Trump — who has written more books than either aforementioned novelist and is perhaps the greatest American of all — obviously merits mention. But of the three, who is the greatest writer? The following comparison should move the discussion along:

Number of Books Written:
Hemingway: 15

Faulkner: 13

Trump: 18

Literary Influence:
Hemingway: Gertrude Stein

Faulkner: James Joyce

Trump: Scriptwriters for The A-Team, Airwolf

Often Compared To:
Hemingway: Joseph Conrad (Heart of Darkness)

Faulkner: Henry James (Daisy Miller)

Trump: Benito Mussolini (The Doctrine of Fascism)

covercovercoverProfound Quote:
Hemingway: “The world breaks every one and afterward many are strong at the broken places.” — A Farewell to Arms

Faulkner: “Memory believes before knowing remembers.” — Light in August

Trump: “If you have laws that you don’t enforce, then you don’t have laws. This leads to lawlessness.” — Crippled America

covercoverOn Love:
Hemingway: “You belong to me and all Paris belongs to me and I belong to this notebook and this pencil.” (A Moveable Feast)

Faulkner: “They say love dies between two people. That’s wrong. It doesn’t die. It just leaves you, goes away, if you aren’t good enough, worthy enough.” (“The Wild Palms”)

Trump: “There’s nothing more terrible than an ex-spouse with a ten-ton axe to grind, and no agreement on how your common property is to be divided.” (Think BIG and Kick Ass in Business and Life)

Attitude Towards Women:
Hemingway: Troubling

Faulkner: Problematic

Trump: Medieval

Intractable Problem:
Hemingway: Depression

Faulkner: Alcoholism

Trump: Twitter

covercovercoverMemorable Film:
Hemingway: For Whom the Bell Tolls, starring Gary Cooper

Faulkner: Tomorrow, starring Robert Duvall

Trump: Cameo in Home Alone 2, starring Macaulay Culkin

Unifying Theme:
Hemingway: Life is a constant test of man’s will and fortitude.

Faulkner: We must confront the darkness that lurks within ourselves.

Trump: Donald Trump is like Scrooge McDuck, but with pants. Also, he hates himself.

Titles that Reference Thinking “BIG” While Assaulting Acquaintances and Business Associates:
Hemingway: 0

Faulkner: 0

Trump: 1 (Think BIG and Kick Ass in Business and Life)

Muse:
Hemingway: Martha Gellhorn, fellow war correspondent

Faulkner: Meta Carpenter, Howard Hawks’s secretary

Trump: Donald Trump, clothed orangutan

Politically Notable For:
Hemingway: Siding with the Republicans while covering the Spanish Civil War

Faulkner: Keeping his affiliations to himself at a time of great social upheaval

Trump: Running for president to extend his brand, then at some point realizing, Oh fuck, it’s for real

Image Credit: LPW.

is a staff writer for The Millions and an associate editor at MAD magazine. Find links to more of his work and follow him @Jacob_Lambert.

3 comments:

  1. There’s a straight line from Flem Snopes to Donald Trump. It detours a bit through George Wallace. But then it goes straight to New York.

  2. So basically a shameless attention grab by bringing Trump into the mix? Come on, he doesn’t need any more attention. I was hoping there would at least be some kind of explanation given as to why he should be part of this, but there clearly is not.

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