Dorothy Parker

Why Do We Treat Literature’s Male and Female Alcoholics So Differently?

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This weekend, the Guardian ran an excerpt from a new book by the writer and critic Olivia Laing called The Trip to Echo Spring: Why Writers Drink. The book will not be out in the United States until December, but the excerpt was a hit on social media. Writers, depression, addiction: these are magical elements for public legacies. Scott Fitzgerald wouldn’t be recognizable without the drink, nor Hemingway. Both of them appear in Laing’s narrative, along with Tennessee Williams, John Cheever, John Berryman, and Raymond Carver. It sounds fascinating, and I can’t wait to read it.
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‘Vice’ Removes Controversial Female Writer Suicide Spread: Is the Sophomoric Publication Finally Growing Up?

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An editorial fashion spread tells a story using images, not words. It’s the photographer’s job to tell that story: what she intended, what she hoped to convey. In Vice’s latest spread, female writers like Virginia Woolf, Sylvia Plath, Charlotte Perkins Gilman, and Dorothy Parker stare down their own pending demise at their own hands. The story is pretty clear: the editors of Vice were more interested in getting attention at any cost than paying respectful tribute to women writers who committed suicide, and editorial taste came second to the lazy grab for page views. Following an overwhelmingly negative response across the Internet, the editors of Vice removed the feature.
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The Questionable Fates of Famous Authors’ Birthplaces

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This week, we were surprised by the news that George Orwell’s Indian birthplace will be developed into a memorial. Why should that be so surprising, you ask? Well, because it’s not being turned into a memorial for George Orwell, but for the entirely deserving but somewhat more random Mahatma Gandhi. Though many authors’ birthplaces have been turned into museums or monuments to their lives, several have met with rather more questionable (and sometimes downright upsetting) fates. We investigate after the jump.
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Tournament of Books Organizers Pick the Winners of 12 Classic Literary Beefs

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Today is the first day of The Morning News‘s epic annual Tournament of Books, an excellent and wordy alternative (or supplement) to March Madness for all us literary types. To celebrate, we asked the ToB’s organizers — the venerable Rosecrans Baldwin, Kevin Guilfoile, John Warner, and Andrew Womack — to act as judges for a few imaginary literary match-ups. Because who doesn’t want to imagine the results of Tolstoy and Dostoevsky throwing down? After the jump, find out who would win in a fight — Mailer or Vidal, Hemingway or Faulkner, Dorothy Parker or anybody, and more. Don’t agree? Argue your literary hearts out in the comments, and then be sure to get in on the real-life highbrow smackdown here.
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