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Description - Collected Stories by Tennessee Williams

"Disturbing, moving, and funny; these stories help amplify Williams' tragic vision, for like the plays, they underline his preoccupation and insight into the conflicts of the human heart". ("New York Times"). Acclaimed as one of America's most successful playwrights, Tennessee Williams also published four volumes of short stories. In "Collected Stories", these volumes are combined with a wealth of unpublished and uncollected work, ranging from his first his story published in "Weird Tales" when William was seventeen, to his later frank homosexual fantasies. Williams was famous for insisting he write every morning. Even during his darkest days, while mourning a lover, or abusing some substance - he would write. "The Collected Stories" are from every period of his life, and recreate the milieux Williams knew and chronicled so movingly - from his gypsy youth in St. Louis and New Orleans to his days of celebrity in Hollywood and New York. "The two ingredients of Williams' plays - great gab and steamy sex - are both here in the stories". (Edmund White, "Sunday Times").

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Book Details

ISBN: 9780749395810
ISBN-10: 0749395818
Format: Paperback
(198mm x 129mm x 40mm)
Pages: 672
Imprint: Vintage
Publisher: Vintage Publishing
Publish Date: 15-Apr-1996
Country of Publication: United Kingdom

Book Reviews - Collected Stories by Tennessee Williams

US Kirkus Review » About 800 pages, containing nearly all the published and unpublished short stories by Tennessee Williams, which gain enormously from being read en bloc. Quite likely this volume will bring Williams a startling new reputation - rivaling his stature as a playwright - as a great American short-story writer. Readers who once dismissed his fiction as overwritten, precious, bizarre lispings out of Kraft-Ebing's Psychopathia Sexualis may well have to revise their sneers. The best - and there's a lot of it - is solid work, worthy of our finest short-story writers. As Gore Vidal points out in his attractively Vidalesque introduction, the stories fall into four groups. "First, those written up to 1941 when, at 30, he became a professionally produced if unsuccessful playwright with Battle of Angels. The second period was from 1941 to 1945, when he became a hugely successful professional playwright. . . Third, the great period, 1945 to 1952, when all the ideas for the plays were either in his head as stories - or on the stage itself. Fourth, the rest of his life when he wrote few stories. . ." His first story, published in Weird Tales at 17, is an alluringly polished Egyptian Gothic, but he moves quickly into mature storytelling. Among a marvelously written dozen standouts are "The Overstuffed Chair," a moving family portrait and the only story printed out of chronological order; "Two on a Party," about a female lush and a fairy who travel together and sleep together, with sometimes a stranger between them; "ONe Arm," about a young, one-armed Apollo-Christ-hustler on death row; "Desire and the Black Masseur," which deserves to be discovered afresh; "The Kingdom of Earth," a perfectly voiced cornpone, lust-crazed myth; and "Completed," written at 71, about a 20-year-old nearly mute debutante who has not had her first period but is having a coming-out party anyway. All told, a fat collection of misfits, grotesques, castoffs and riff-raff, all of them revealed by a genius of the damned. (Kirkus Reviews)

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Author Biography - Tennessee Williams

Tennessee Williams was born in 1911 in Mississippi. He entered college during the Depression and left after a couple of years to work in a shoe company. He entered the University of Iowa in 1938 and received a Rockefeller Fellowship in 1940 for his play Battle of Angels. Williams wrote over thirty plays including The Glass Menagerie (1944), A Street Car Named Desire (1947) and Cat on a Hot Tin Roof (1955). He won the Pulitzer Prize in 1948 and 1955. Tennessee Williams died in 1983

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