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Inman Diary: A Public and Private Confession

Inman, Arthur Crew; Aaron Daniel (editor)

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ISBN 10: 0674454456 / ISBN 13: 9780674454453
Published by Harvard University Press, Cumbreland, Rhode Island, U.S.A., 1985
New Condition: New Hardcover
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In publisher's slipcase, still in publisher's shrinkwrap. Unused and unopened. Bookseller Inventory # 006887

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Bibliographic Details

Title: Inman Diary: A Public and Private Confession

Publisher: Harvard University Press, Cumbreland, Rhode Island, U.S.A.

Publication Date: 1985

Binding: Blue Cloth

Book Condition:New

Edition: First Edition.

About this title


a chamber opera by Thomas Oboe Lee
based on the life and writings of Arthur Crew Inman

and on the play Visitations by Lorenzo DeStefano

September 14-16, 2007
Tower Auditorium Theatre
Massachusetts College of Art
621 Huntington Avenue
Boston, MA
617-899-4261 for further information
produced with the cooperation of Harvard University Press

Between 1919 and his death by suicide in 1963, Arthur Crew Inmanwrote what is surely one of the fullest diaries ever kept by any American.Convinced that his bid for immortality required complete candor, heheld nothing back. This abridgment of the original 155 volumes is atonce autobiography, social chronicle, and an apologia addressed to unborn readers.

Into this fascinating record Inman poured memories of a privilegedAtlanta childhood, disastrous prep-school years, a nervous collapse incollege followed by a bizarre life of self-diagnosed invalidism. Confinedto a darkened room in his Boston apartment, he lived vicariously:through newspaper advertisements he hired "talkers" to tell him thestories of their lives, and he wove their strange histories into the diary.Young women in particular fascinated him. He studied their moods,bought them clothes, fondled them, and counseled them on their loveaffairs. His marriage in 1923 to Evelyn Yates, the heroine of the diary,survived a series of melodramatic episodes. While reflecting on nationalpolitics, waifs and revolutions, Inman speaks directly about his fears,compulsions, fantasies, and nightmares, coaxing the reader into intimacy with him. Despite his shocking self-disclosures he emerges as anoddly impressive figure.

This compelling work is many things: a case history of a deeply troubled man; the story of a transplanted and self-conscious southerner; ahistorical overview of Boston illuminated with striking cityscapes; anodd sort of American social history. But chiefly it is, as Inman himselfcame to see, a gigantic nonfiction novel, a new literary form. As it movesinexorably toward a powerful denouement, The Inman Diary is an addictive narrative.

About the Author:

Daniel Aaron is Victor S. Thomas Professor of English and American Literature, Emeritus, Harvard University.

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