Fussell in Paris, France, May 1945
|Born||22 March 1924|
|Died||23 May 2012 88) (aged|
|Occupation||Educator; historian; social critic; author|
|Alma mater|| Pomona College (B.A.),|
Harvard University (MA), (PhD)
National Book Award; National Book Critics Circle Award; Ralph Waldo Emerson Award.
|Spouse|| Betty Fussell |
(?-2012; his death)
Samuel Wilson Fussell
|Battles/wars||World War II|
|Awards||Purple Heart; Bronze Star|
Paul Fussell, Jr. (22 March 1924 – 23 May 2012) was an American cultural and literary historian, author and university professor.His writings cover a variety of topics, from scholarly works on eighteenth-century English literature to commentary on America's class system. Fussell served in the 103rd Infantry Division during World War II and was wounded in fighting in France. Returning to the US, Fussell wrote extensively and held several faculty positions, most prominently at Rutgers University (1955-1983) and at the University of Pennsylvania (1983-1994). He is best known for his writings about World War I and II, which explore what he felt was the gap between the romantic myth and reality of war; he made a "career out of refusing to disguise it or elevate it".
Born and raised in Pasadena, California, Fussell was the second off three children. His father, Paul Fussell (1895–1973), son of a widowed schoolteacher, became a corporate lawyer in Los Angeles with the firm of O'Melveny & Myers. His mother, Wilhma Wilson Sill (1893–1971), was the daughter of a carriage trimmer in Illinois.His brother, Edwin Sill Fussell, was an author, poet, and professor of American Studies at the University of California, San Diego; his sister Florence Fussell Lind lives in Berkeley, California.
His daughter, Rosalind, is an artist-teacher in Arizona and the author of a graphic novel, Mammoir: A Pictorial Odyssey of the Adventures of a Fourth Grade Teacher with Breast Cancer.His son, Samuel Wilson Fussell, a writer and hunter in Montana, is the author of Muscle: Confessions of an Unlikely Bodybuilder.
Fussell attended Pomona College from 1941 until he was commissioned as an officer in the U.S. Army in 1943. He landed in France in 1944 as a 20-year-old second lieutenant with the 103rd Infantry Division(45th Infantry Division, according to Fussell in his article on the atom bomb in The New Republic , 1981) and was wounded while fighting in Alsace, and was awarded the Bronze Star and Purple Heart. He was honorably discharged from the Army in 1946, returned to Pomona to finish his B.A. degree in 1946-7, married fellow Pomona graduate Betty Harper in 1949, and completed his MA (1949) and PhD (1952) at Harvard University.
He began his teaching career at Connecticut College (1951–55) before moving to Rutgers University in 1955 and finally the University of Pennsylvania in 1983. He also taught at the University of Heidelberg (1957–58) and King's College London (1990–92). As a professor, he travelled widely with his family throughout Europe from the 1950s to '70s, taking Fulbright and sabbatical years in Germany, England and France.
Betty Fussell has described their marriage and its breakup in 1981 in her memoir, My Kitchen Wars.After Fussell moved from his home in Princeton, New Jersey, to Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, he divorced Betty and married Harriette Behringer. He retired from the University of Pennsylvania in 1994 and lived with his wife in Oregon.
When he first entered college, Fussell intended a career in journalism. His plans changed when his sergeant was killed beside him in combat, about which he wrote in his memoir Doing Battle (1996).In his writings he opposed war, promoting instead a vision of rational enlightenment. He pointed to what he saw as the hypocrisy of governmental speech and the corruption of popular culture.
His published thesis, Theory of Prosody in Eighteenth-Century England, was developed into Poetic Meter and Poetic Form (1965), a popular textbook for understanding poetry.Samuel Johnson and The Life of Writing (1971) offered an analysis of the work of the English lexicographer, Samuel Johnson. The Anti-Egotist, Kingsley Amis: Man of Letters was a study of the life and work of friend and colleague, Kingsley Amis.
The award-winning The Great War and Modern Memory (1975)was a cultural and literary analysis of the impact of World War I on the development of modern literature and modern literary conventions. John Keegan said its effect was "revolutionary", in that it showed how literature could be a vehicle for expressing the experience of large groups. "What Paul did was go to the literary treatments of the war by 20 or 30 participants and turn them into an encapsulation of a collective European experience". (John Keegan) Joseph Heller called it "the best book I know of about world war one".
Abroad: British Literary Travelling Between the Wars (1980) was a pioneering academic examination of travel literature which examined the travel books of Evelyn Waugh, Graham Greene, D. H. Lawrence and Robert Byron.
Fussell stated that he relished the inevitable controversy of Class: A Guide Through the American Status System (1983)and indulged his increasing public status as a loved or hated "curmudgeon" in the rant called BAD: or, The Dumbing of America (1991). In between, Thank God for the Atom Bomb and Other Essays (1988) confirmed his war against governmental and military doublespeak and prepared the way for Wartime: Understanding and Behavior in the Second World War (1989). The epiphany of his earlier essay, "My War", found full expression in his memoir Doing Battle: The Making of a Skeptic (1996), "My Adolescent illusions, largely intact to that moment, fell away all at once, and I suddenly knew I was not and never would be in a world that was reasonable or just". The last book by Fussell published while he was alive, The Boys' Crusade: The American Infantry in Northwestern Europe, 1944–45 (2003) was once again concerned with the experience of combat in World War II.
Fussell's 1975 literary study The Great War and Modern Memory won the National Book Award in category Arts and Letters.the National Book Critics Circle Award for Criticism, and the Ralph Waldo Emerson Award of Phi Beta Kappa. It was ranked number 75 in the Modern Library's Board's List of the 100 Best Nonfiction Books of the Twentieth Century.
He was elected in 1977 a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature.
He won the 2005 Hessell-Tiltman Prize for The Boys' Crusade.[ citation needed ] Fussell was one of several veterans interviewed in the Ken Burns and Lynn Novick documentary The War in 2007, and in the 1999 ABC-produced documentary The Century: America's Time .[ citation needed ]
Fussell died of natural causes on 23 May 2012 at a long-term care facility in Medford, Oregon. He had previously lived in Portland, Oregon for two years.He was 88.
Sir Kingsley William Amis, was an English novelist, poet, critic and teacher. He wrote more than 20 novels, six volumes of poetry, a memoir, short stories, radio and television scripts, and works of social and literary criticism. He is best known for satirical comedies such as One Fat Englishman (1963), Ending Up (1974), Jake's Thing (1978) and The Old Devils (1986). His biographer, Zachary Leader, called Amis "the finest English comic novelist of the second half of the twentieth century." He was the father of the novelist Martin Amis. In 2008, The Times ranked him ninth on a list of the 50 greatest British writers since 1945.
Literary criticism is the study, evaluation, and interpretation of literature. Modern literary criticism is often influenced by literary theory, which is the philosophical discussion of literature's goals and methods. Though the two activities are closely related, literary critics are not always, and have not always been, theorists.
Martin Louis Amis is a British novelist, essayist, memoirist, and screenwriter. His best-known novels are Money (1984) and London Fields (1989). He has received the James Tait Black Memorial Prize for his memoir Experience and has been listed for the Booker Prize twice. Amis served as the Professor of Creative Writing at the Centre for New Writing at the University of Manchester until 2011. In 2008, The Times named him one of the 50 greatest British writers since 1945.
The "angry young men" were a group of mostly working- and middle-class British playwrights and novelists who became prominent in the 1950s. The group's leading figures included John Osborne and Kingsley Amis. The phrase was originally coined by the Royal Court Theatre's press officer in order to promote Osborne's 1956 play Look Back in Anger. It is thought to be derived from the autobiography of Leslie Paul, founder of the Woodcraft Folk, whose Angry Young Man was published in 1951.
Terence Francis Eagleton is a British literary theorist, critic, and public intellectual. He is currently Distinguished Professor of English Literature at Lancaster University.
George Sutherland Fraser was a Scottish poet, literary critic and academic.
Jonathan Culler is an American literary critic. He is Class of 1916 Professor of English and Comparative Literature at Cornell University. His published works are in the fields of structuralism, literary theory and literary criticism.
The genre of travel literature encompasses outdoor literature, guide books, nature writing, and travel memoirs.
Lord Edward Christian David Gascoyne-Cecil, CH was a British biographer, historian, and scholar. He held the style of "Lord" by courtesy, as a younger son of a marquess.
William John Thomas Mitchell, also known as W. J. T. Mitchell, is an American academic. Mitchell is the Gaylord Donnelley Distinguished Service Professor of English and Art History at the University of Chicago. He is also the editor of Critical Inquiry, and contributes to the journal October.
Amitava Kumar is an Indian writer and journalist who is Professor of English on the Helen D. Lockwood Chair at Vassar College.
The James Bond Dossier (1965), by Kingsley Amis, is a critical analysis of the James Bond novels. Amis dedicated the book to friend and background collaborator, the poet and historian Robert Conquest. Later, after Ian Fleming's death, Amis was commissioned as the first continuation novelist for the James Bond novel series, writing Colonel Sun (1968) under the pseudonym Robert Markham. The James Bond Dossier was the first, formal, literary study of the James Bond character. More recent studies of Fleming's secret agent and his world include The Politics of James Bond: From Fleming's Novels to the Big Screen (2001), by the historian Jeremy Black.
The Thin Red Line is American author James Jones's fourth novel. It draws heavily on Jones's experiences at the Battle of Mount Austen, the Galloping Horse, and the Sea Horse during World War II's Guadalcanal campaign. The author served in the United States Army's 27th Infantry Regiment, 25th Infantry Division.
Betty Harper Fussell is an American writer and is the author of 12 books, ranging from biography to cookbooks, food history and memoir. Over the last 50 years, her essays on food, travel and the arts have appeared in scholarly journals, popular magazines and newspapers as varied as The New York Times, The New Yorker, The Los Angeles Times, Saveur, Vogue, Food & Wine, Metropolitan Home and Gastronomica. Her memoir, My Kitchen Wars, was performed in Hollywood and New York as a one-woman show by actress Dorothy Lyman. Her most recent book is Eat Live Love Die, and she is now working on How to Cook a Coyote: A Manual of Survival.
Zachary Leader is a professor of English Literature at the University of Roehampton. He was an undergraduate at Northwestern University, and did graduate work at Trinity College, Cambridge and Harvard University, where he was awarded a PhD in English in 1977. Although born and raised in the U.S. he has lived for over forty years in the U.K., and has dual British and American citizenship. His best-known works are The Letters of Kingsley Amis (2001), The Life of Kingsley Amis (2007), a finalist for the 2008 Pulitzer Prize in Biography, UK; 2007, US), and The Life of Saul Bellow: To Fame and Fortune, 1915-1964, which was shortlisted for the Wingate Prize in the U.K. The Life of Saul Bellow: Love and Strife 1965 to 2005 was published in 2018. He has written and edited a dozen books, including both volumes of the Bellow biography, and is General Editor of The Oxford History of Life-Writing, a seven-volume series published by OUP. A recipient of Guggenheim, Whiting, Huntington, Leverhulme and British Academy Fellowships, he is also a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature.
The Rachel Papers is Martin Amis' first novel, published in 1973 by Jonathan Cape.
Derek Stanley Brewer was a medieval scholar, author and publisher.
Of Other Worlds is a 1966 anthology of literary criticism by C. S. Lewis and published posthumously by the executors of his estate. It was edited by Lewis' secretary and eventual literary executor Walter Hooper. The first part of the anthology consists of several essays that cover Lewis' ideas about the creation of science fiction or fantasy literature. Unreal Estates is the transcript of a recorded conversation between Lewis and the authors Brian Aldiss and Kingsley Amis that took place in Lewis' rooms in Magdalene College "a short while before illness forced him to retire." The second part of the book is made up of three of Lewis' science fiction stories and the beginnings of After Ten Years, an unfinished novel set during the aftermath of the Trojan War.
My Sister and I: The Diary of a Dutch Boy Refugee was first published in January 1941 in New York by Harcourt, Brace. It is the alleged diary of a 12-year-old Dutch boy, named Dirk Van Der Heide, who survives the bombing of Rotterdam, Holland and escapes aboard a ship with his younger sister. They stop in England on their way to America. This book was used for pro-British propaganda.
The Great War and Modern Memory is a book of literary criticism written by Paul Fussell and published in 1975 by Oxford University Press. It describes the literary responses by English participants in World War I to their experiences of combat, particularly in trench warfare. The perceived futility and insanity of this conduct became, for many gifted Englishmen of their generation, a metaphor for life. Fussell describes how the collective experience of the "Great War" was correlated with, and to some extent underlain by, an enduring shift in the aesthetic perceptions of individuals, from the tropes of Romanticism that had guided young adults before the war, to the harsher themes that came to be dominant during the war and after.
|Wikiquote has quotations related to: Paul Fussell|