Exiled in Paris: Richard Wright, James Baldwin, Samuel Beckett, and Others on the Left Bank

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9780520234413: Exiled in Paris: Richard Wright, James Baldwin, Samuel Beckett, and Others on the Left Bank
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Exiled in Paris provides a compelling look at the personalities who fueled the literary and philosophical dramas of postwar Paris: James Baldwin, Alexander Trocchi, Boris Vian, Maurice Girodias, and many others. James Campbell provides a fresh look at Samuel Beckett's early career; reveals the facts behind the publication of the scandalous best-seller The Story of O; and tells the poignant story of Richard Wright's years in exile. He captures the sense of deliverance that Wright, so accustomed to daily humiliations in his own country, experienced during his sojourn on the Left Bank, where, for the first time in his life, he was treated as a great man of letters. Here, too, are all the circumstances surrounding Wright's mysterious death, which many close to him regarded as suspicious.

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About the Author:

James Campbell is the author of Talking at the Gates: A Life of James Baldwin (California, 2002), This Is the Beat Generation: New York, San Francisco, Paris (California, 2001), and Invisible Country: A Journey through Scotland (1990). He works for the Times Literary Supplement.

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This slice of Parisian literary life between the Lost and Beat generations is an elegant document of the elemental, the existential, and the erotic in a city and time bathed in blue light. Black expatriate writers are the platform from which Campbell, biographer of James Baldwin, explores other literary outsiders in a weary, disillusioned postwar Paris. In exile were Richard Wright, James Baldwin, and hundreds of other black intellectuals who fled oppressive American racism to be feted in France as true men of letters. Campbell connects these writers--somewhat uneasily--to other literary outsiders in 1940s and 1950s Paris. The publishers of Zero, Points, and Merlin literary magazines, and the erotic/pornographic Olympia Press, moved with the tides of the weary, desperately intellectual French avant-garde. Together they published Sartre, Camus, Beckett, Miller, Genet, and Sade, some for the first time in English. The writer's risks became those publishers' risky fight for freedom--from censorship, restrictive bourgeois values, and civilization itself. This is not the Paris of Hemingway's movable feast or Stein's salons. It was about left or right, published or unpublishable, obscene and outrageous or obscure. Deanna Larson

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9780689121722: Exiled in Paris: Richard Wright, James Baldwin, Samuel Beckett, and Others on the Left Bank

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ISBN 10:  0689121725 ISBN 13:  9780689121722
Publisher: Scribner, 1995
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