US Congressman Steve Cohen Honors Gore Vidal with Statement for the Congressional Record
On August 2, 2012, US Congressman StEve Cohen (TN-09) introduced a Statement for the Congressional Record honoring the life and accomplishments of Gore Vidal. The statement Congressman Cohen made is seen below.
"Mr. Speaker, I rise today to highlight and remember the life of Gore Vidal, a celebrated American literary and cultural icon, who passed away this week at the age of 86. A writer famed for his acerbic wit, elegant style, tough-minded radical views and versatile talent, Vidal’s incredibly varied career boasted over 20 novels, in addition to memoirs, essays, plays, television dramas, and screenplays.
Vidal was impressively characterized by the inimitable and revered Christopher Hitchens as being a 20th century answer to Oscar Wilde, a tribute to Vidal’s cleverness and eloquence. As British author Martin Amis said in praising Vidal, 'he is learned, funny and exceptionally clear-sighted. Even his blind spots are illuminating.'
In 2009, Vidal won the annual Medal for Distinguished Contribution to American Letters from the National Book Foundation. Unlike many of his intellectual contemporaries, however, he saw his role as a public intellectual not as a sidelined observer, but rather as an active participant in democracy and public affairs, contributing frequently and prolifically to the American political debate.
This weekend, I will travel to New York to see a revival of his play 'The Best Man,' starring my fellow Memphian, Cybill Shephard. I ask everyone to join me honoring Gore Vidal for his many contributions. His was a life well-lived."