Saul Bellow was a Canadian born American writer. For his literary contributions, Bellow was awarded the Pulitzer Prize, the Nobel Prize for Literature, and the National Medal of Arts. He is the only writer to win the National Book Award for Fiction three times and he received the Foundation's lifetime Medal for Distinguished Contribution to American Letters in 1990.
His best-known works include The Adventures of Augie March, Henderson the Rain King, Herzog, Mr. Sammler's Planet, Seize the Day, Humboldt's Gift and Ravelstein. , Dangling Man is the story of a moderately intelligent young man, Joseph, who has enlisted in the army but is stuck in some sort of bureaucratic purgatory while the authorities figure out what to do with him.
The quest is the search for the strength to overcome the fear of choice, and avoid public institutions whose claims are hostile to the imagination and to individual autonomy While his colleagues go off to battle, or are stationed around the country, Joseph spends his days in a shoddy boarding house, walking around Chicago, avoiding questions about his current position, having meaningful conversations with himself, looking back over his past, and generally being a layabout little shit. Joseph considers himself as something of an intellectual, a scholar who had previously found success in rote employment. Joseph’s self-assuredness and confrontational methods of dealing with the world and others brings Salinger’s Holden Caulfield to mind. More appropriate a comparison would be with Frank Wheeler from