Continual Pilgrimage by Christopher Sawyer-Laucanno
American Writers in Paris, 1944-1960

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Synopsis

The pilgrimage of American writers to Paris began with Henry James over a century ago, and has continued in waves ever since. This book is not concerned with the 'lost generation' whose exploits between the wars have been extensively chronicled, although Ernest Hemingway and Gertrude Stein do still preside over the opening years of the period it covers. Post-liberation Paris was where James Baldwin sought refuge from America's racism and anti-homosexualism, and found his voice; where Irwin Shaw's hospitality mixed Hollywood celebrities with struggling writers; where Allen Ginsberg and Gregory Corso caroused through the night at the 'Beat Hotel' and tried to imagine what William Burroughs could do with his chaotic "Naked Lunch". Others in search of artistic freedom included Richard Wright, William Styron, James Jones and Chester Hines. The era saw the rebirth of English-language publishing in Paris. The founders of "Merlin" magazine featured Samuel Beckett in every issue, and then, when they ran out of funds, joined forces with Maurice Girodias, whose press published not only their pseudonymous erotica but also the works of Nabakov, Beckett and Burroughs.
 

About Christopher Sawyer-Laucanno

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Christopher Sawyer-Laucanno's books include The Continual Pilgrimage: American Writers in Paris, 1944-1960 and An Invisible Spectator: A Biography of Paul Bowles which was a New York Times Notable Book of the Year. He is also a poet and translator, and the long-time Writer-in-Residence at MIT. For E.E. Cummings: A Biography, he had unprecedented access to all of Cummings's papers, many of which had been previously sealed. He lives in Turners Falls, Massachusetts.
 
Published September 1, 1992 by Grove Pr. 345 pages
Genres: Biographies & Memoirs, History, Travel, Literature & Fiction. Non-fiction

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The experience of the ``Lost Generation'' in the 1920s was not unique: after the Second World War, Paris once again became a haven for expatriate American writers, shows Sawyer-Laucanno ( The Invisible Spectator , a biography of Paul Bowles).

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