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By Marle Woodson

At the back of the Door of fable is the memoir of a journalist whose neighbors dedicated him to an Oklahoma psychological clinic within the early Nineteen Thirties in a determined try to medication him of alcoholism. it's a robust and unusual social observation on Depression-era the US that gives perception into political and monetary forces affecting a missed underclass.

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I would learn my place and keep it. I knew I must step carefully and let closer acquaintance and my conduct recommend me to those now in charge of me, and who would judge me by my actions. The doctor entered my name, age, height and the name of the county from which I came, on a blank form. A wide shouldered attendant and another man were waiting, and took me in charge. I was led down a long concrete walk to another of the large, sombre brick buildings. Page 8 I noted that both of the men kept hold of my arms.

No one near me seemed to pay the slightest attention to me. The patients just sat there, silent, staring into space. Some of them looked sullen. Others looked just vacant-minded. Then I noticed that none of the chairs were occupied by any of the men who had visited me while I was in bed. I had become somewhat acquainted with several of them. Finally I happened to look down the long hallway which led out of one side of the day room. Off of it on either side doors opened into small rooms. In the hallway I recognized two or three of the patients with whom I had become acquainted.

10 Though the editors at Macmillan were sufficiently impressed to request the manuscript, nothing in Woodson's letter of inquiry could have prepared them for his portraits of Whizbang Mabel, the Amazon who invented original vulgarities whenever she spoke; of Blondy, the demented man who kept trying to escape through he kitchen door; of the Concrete Man and the Spider, who thought that was what they were; of Talking Louis, issuing instructions to the British royal family through an imaginary young woman; or of the beknighted patient who played both parts in a prizefight and ended each performance by knocking himself out.

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