Ondaatje begins Coming Through Slaughter with simple information about the environment of Buddy Bolden. “His geography” was the Storyville district of New Orleans. “2000 prostitutes were working regularly. There were at least 70 professional gamblers. 30 piano players took in several thousand each week in weekly tips.” As the novel progresses nothing further is said about the professional gamblers, or the piano players. In this novel about a jazz legend, however, the prostitutes continually resurface. What is the connection to Buddy Bolden? This presentation will explore an analogous existence of prostitutes and commercialized artists in the novel.
Alex Langerman, ’99 Highwood, IL
Majors: Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Philosophy
Sponsor: Richard Martin