Spirited youthful letters that trace the making of a great critic whose taste would shape the art world of his time. . Clement Greenberg was, and remains, America's most perceptive, prescient, and influential art critic. More than any other writer, it was he who charted the course through the early years of Abstract Expressionism, and whose taste and judgment established the reputations of such art stars as Pollock, de Kooning, and David Smith. Before all that, however, he was a young man burning to become an intellectual, who went forth to experience art and culture-and a lot of life and love along the way. His closest confidant during these youthful years was Harold Lazarus, a classmate at Syracuse University and a future professor of English. From 1928, when both were nineteen, until 1943, they exchanged honest, funny, and intimate letters, and now Greenberg's widow has gathered together his side of the correspondence. The result is intellectual history on-the-hoof, a raw and candid account of Greenberg's thoughts and fears, his prodigious reading and culture watching, his army years and mental breakdown, his unquenchable curiosity and artistic appetite. Here, in The Harold Lett;Above all, here is all the passion and pain of being twentysomething with a dream to follow and a world to conquer-anytime, anywhere.