“I howled unto the Lord,” the orator bawled angrily. “That’s what I done. I howled unto the Lord…. and the Lord said unto me: ‘What’s biting you, Perce?’ And I answered and said: ‘Me sins lie bitter in me belly,’ I says, ‘I’ve backslid,’ I says, ‘and the grade’s too hot for me.’ And the Lord said: ‘Give it another pop, Perce.’ And I give it another pop and the Lord backed me up and I’m saved.”
The importance of novels and short stories in our society is great. Fiction supplies the only philosophy that many readers know; it establishes their ethical, social, and material standards; it confirms them in their prejudices or opens their minds to a wider world.