Dos Passos: A Life

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Northwestern University Press, Nov 11, 2004 - Biography & Autobiography - 624 pages
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A New York Times Notable Book

An intimate biography of a great American writer.

He rose from a childhood as the illegitimate son of a financial titan to become the man Sartre called "the greatest writer of our time." A progressive writer who turned his passions into the groundbreaking U.S.A. trilogy, John Dos Passos later embraced conservative causes. At the height of his career he was considered a peer of Hemingway and Fitzgerald, yet he died in obscurity in 1970.

Award-winning biographer Virginia Spencer Carr examines the contradictions of Dos Passos's life with an in-depth study of the man. Using the writer's letters and journals, and with assistance from the Dos Passos family, Carr reconstructs an epic life, one of literary acclaim and bitter obscurity, restless wandering and happy marriage, friendship with Edmund Wilson and feuds with Hemingway. First published to acclaim in 1984, Dos Passos remains the definitive personal portrait of the author.
 

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Dos Passos: a life

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Carr got up close with Dos in this 1984 biography, which was written with the cooperation of the author's family. Read full review

Contents

PROLOGUE
3
3
23
5
37
6
51
7
72
Summer 1916
95
9
111
10
123
17
265
18
315
20
357
21
379
22
413
23
431
24
463
BOOK III
479

11
153
12
173
13
189
14
219
15
235
16
249
25
485
26
523
27
543
NOTES AND SOURCES
557
INDEX
603
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About the author (2004)

Virginia Spencer Carr was formerly the John B. and Elena Džaz-VersÚn Chair of English Letters at Georgia State University. Her other works include the forthcoming Paul Bowles: A Life (Scribner, 2004), Understanding Carson McCullers (South Carolina, 1991), and The Lonely Hunter: A Biography of Carson McCullers (Doubleday, 1975), winner of the Francis Butler Simkins Prize of the Southern Historical Society and Longwood College. Carr lives in Atlanta, Georgia.

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