on Editing The Garden of Eden
In 1986, twenty-five years after Hemingway’s death, Scribner’s posthumously published his novel The Garden of Eden. The novel profoundly changed the popular conception of Hemingway and excited a critical reinvestigation of his career.
In order for the novel to be published, Scribner’s called on Tom Jenks to do the editing. Jenks hauled the sprawling manuscript home on the New York City subway in shopping bags and began his work, which was one of the most high-profile editorial jobs in the history of American literature.
Jenks joins Mark Cirano, host of One True Podcast and associate professor of English at the University of Evansville, to discuss his efforts with The Garden of Eden—his editing strategy, his assessment of Hemingway’s work, and his thoughts about the book’s legacy. Since 1986 Jenks has discussed his Hemingway work only sparingly, so his frank discussion is a rare treat.