Edward Mendelson discusses at length the "illegality of Pynchon's vision." He describes the author of Gravity's Rainbow as an outsider who chooses "a stance alien to our literary culture," a writer who "proposes a grotesquerie that governance can never acknowledge," a person who stakes out a "position at the edge of a culture." Thomas Pynchon, were he available for comment, might agree with such statements. He might also point out that the same sorts of things were said of an ancestor of his, William Pynchon, who published in 1650 a religious tract entitled The Meritorious Price of Our Redemption. Ezra Hoyt Byington writes of this tract.