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  • James Purdy R.I.P.

    Wed, 25 Mar 2009 04:18

    Sad news from Dan Green:

    Some of you may heard that James Purdy, in my opinion one of the great American writers of the post-World War II era, has died at the age of 94.

    That the news hasn't circulated much around the literary blogosphere doesn't surprise me, as most of the books that brought him whatever modicum of fame he enjoyed during his career were published in the 1960s and 1970s, and in the years since his name recognition has faded and many of his books have fallen out of print. In the 60s he was frequently identified as a writer of "black humor fiction" (along with writers such as Joseph Heller and Bruce Jay Friedman) and after that label itself faded into the literary past he became increasingly considered as a gay writer, but neither of these designations really capture either his scorching humor or his wide-ranging thematic concerns...

    In the meantime, anyone who would like to learn more about Purdy would be well-served by consulting this website sponsored by the James Purdy Society. The linked-to interview with Purdy is especially worthwhile.

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