IN A SHALLOW GRAVE
”I think that often the statement
“Everything we do is wrong” is
pressed on the tombstone of
humanity. The little good that
comes out of our lives is so small
compared with the terrible mistakes
we make. We’re so bewildered and
harassed by our lives and what’s
going on around us, it’s a wonder
we do anything right.”—James Purdy
Lane: A lot of your characters are on boats that are sinking.
Purdy: Almost all of them. I think humanity is always on a sinking ship. . . .
Lane: Is there a fascination for you about this sinking?
Purdy: I’m certainly concerned because it’s everywhere. . . .
Christopher Lane, “Out with James Purdy: An Interview,” Studies in Contemporary Fiction, Vol. 40, No. 1 (1998), http://infotrac.galegroup.com