In _The Perfect Wagnerite_, Bernard Shaw made fun of the biographies of
Richard Wagner (prior to that of Ashton Ellis) for their shutting out of
facts about Wagner's participation in the 1848 revolutions.  The idea seems
to have been that people don't want their heroes to be, or to associate
with, "revolutionary" figures, and will reject factual biographical
statements if those don't conform to the readers' preconceptions.

My vote doesn't count, but I agree with Hitchens that a Clemens biography
should breathe some fire!


> Christopher Hitchens offered quite a different
> appraisal of the book in the November 2003 ATLANTIC