Short Story Review: "The Street" by H. P. Lovecraft
This story begins with the narrator saying that most people don’t believe things and places have souls. The narrator wishes to speak of The Street.
Men of strength and honour fashioned that Street; good, valiant men of our blood who had come from the Blesses Isles across the sea.
He’s speaking, of course, of the New England colonies, “where many Indians lurked.” As the narrative continues, the reader recognizes the American Revolution, the westward expansion and the Civil War. After the First World War, days of evil came, alone with new people.
New kinds of people appeared in The Street; swarthy, sinister faces with furtive eyes and odd features, whose owners spoke unfamiliar words and placed signs in known and unknown characters upon most of the musty houses.
These are terrorists, bent on nothing but destruction. They have covers in places like Petrovitch’s Bakery, the Rifkin School or Modern Economics, and the Liberty Café. It is these interlopers that provoke The Street into action.
Interestingly enough, according to Wikipedia, Lovecraft was reacting to a real world situation. There were parcel bombs beginning in 1914. However, it also reflects Lovecraft’s xenophobia.
I disliked this story, which is unusual for me as, in general, I enjoy Lovecraft’s writing immensely. I cannot recommend it.
Title: “The Street” written 1919 first published in The Wolverine 1920
Author: H. P. Lovecraft (1890-1937)
©2015 Denise Longrie