William Styron: A Life

William Styron: A Life

by James L. W. West III

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A “mesmerizing” biography of the #1 New York Times–bestselling author of Sophie’s Choice, The Confessions of Nat Turner, and Darkness Visible (Entertainment Weekly).

William Styron was one of the most highly regarded and controversial authors of his generation. In this illuminating biography, James L. W. West III draws upon letters, papers, and manuscripts as well as interviews with Styron’s friends and family to recount in rich detail the experiences that shaped each of his groundbreaking books. From Styron’s Southern upbringing, which deeply influenced the Pulitzer Prize–winning The Confessions of Nat Turner and National Book Award–winning Sophie’s Choice, to his feud with Norman Mailer and the clinical depression that led to his acclaimed memoir Darkness Visible, West’s remarkable biography provides invaluable insight into the life and works of a giant of American literature.

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781453202869
Publisher: Open Road Media
Publication date: 08/17/2010
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 506
Sales rank: 817,408
File size: 3 MB

About the Author

James L. W. West III, a native of Virginia, is Sparks Professor of English at Pennsylvania State University. West is a book historian, scholarly editor, and biographer.  He has written books on F. Scott Fitzgerald and on the history of professional authorship in America and has held fellowships from the J. S. Guggenheim Foundation, the National Humanities Center, and the National Endowment for the Humanities.  West has had Fulbright appointments in England (at Cambridge University) and in Belgium (at the Université de Liège). He is the general editor of The Cambridge Edition of the Works of F. Scott Fitzgerald and is at work on a volume of essays.

Table of Contents

  • Cover Page
  • Title Page
  • Table of Contents
  • Preface
  • Preamble
  • 1. Ancestors
  • 2. Youth
  • 3. Newport News
  • 4. Pauline's Death
  • 5. Fourteenth Year
  • 6. Christchurch
  • 7. Davidson
  • 8. Duke and William Blackburn
  • 9. Marines, First Stint
  • 10. After the War
  • 11. McGraw-Hill
  • 12. Durham and Flatbush
  • 13. Valley Cottage and West Eighty-eighth Street
  • 14. Marines, Second Stint
  • 15. Lie Down in Darkness
  • 16. Paris, 1952
  • 17. The Long March
  • 18. Rome
  • 19. Marriage and Ravello
  • 20. New York and Roxbury
  • 21. Mailer and Others
  • 22. Completion
  • 23. Set This House on Fire
  • 24. Reentry
  • 25. Preparations
  • 26. Composition
  • 27. The Confessions of Nat Turner
  • 28. Aftermath
  • 29. Interlude
  • 30. Sophie's Choice
  • 31. Breakdown
  • 32. “A Tidewater Morning”
  • Coda
  • Images from William Styron’s Life
  • Sources and Notes
  • Acknowledgments
  • Index
  • Copyright Page

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