Saul Bellow: big ideas and wandering fools

Lovely tribute in OpenDemocracy by Tom McBride. Excerpt:

Ideas for him were about action, and action was about ideas. Originally a Russian Jew from Montreal, he came of age during the depression in Chicago where the banker and butcher alike were reading Shakespeare and talking about ideas because, as he said later, they had little faith in material success. How could you back then? He freely admitted that as a novelist he was formed in the cauldron of urban life, with its terrific literacy and intellectuality. He never ran with bulls in Pamplona, as did Hemingway, or sought concord with talented ex-cons, as did Norman Mailer. He mainly just hung out in Chicago.