|Publisher:||W W Norton & Co Inc|
|Publish Date:||May 2006|
|Number of Pages:||117|
|Shipping Weight (in pounds):||0.35|
|Product in Inches (L x W x H):||5.0 x 7.75 x 0.25|
Carson McCullers, 1917 - 1967 Novelist Carson McCullers was born Lula Carson Smith on February 19, 1917 in Columbus, Georgia to Lamar and Marguerite Waters Smith. At the age of seventeen, desiring to become a famous concert pianist, McCullers went to New York City to attend the Julliard School of Music. Her family sacrificed and raised money for her tuition to go to Julliard, but she lost all of her money when she left her pocketbook on the subway.
Unable to tell her family what had happened, she took writing classes at Columbia University and New York University from 1935-1936. She was married to Reeves McCullers twice, first from 1937-1940 and then again in 1945, until Reeves suicide in 1953. McCullers first published work was an autobiographical piece for Story magazine, which told of a 15-year-old girl's realization that she is not a musical prodigy. The girl drops her music lessons and subsequently loses her circle of musical friends and the special treatment she received from her parents.
Her first novel was "The Heart Is a Lonely Hunter" (1940), which tells of the relationships between five people living in a small town in Georgia. They are all damaged spirits that cannot connect with any other human beings or a power greater than themselves. Her next novel was "Reflections in a Golden Eye" (1941) and was followed by "The Ballad of the Sad Cafe" (1943), " The Member of the Wedding" (1946) and "Clock Without Hands" (1961). With the help of Tennessee Williams, " The Member of the Wedding" was reshaped into a play, which won the New York Drama Critics Circle Award in 1950. McCullers suffered, during her life, from ailments that included pneumonia, breast cancer, and a series of strokes that left her partially paralyzed. On September 29, 1967, Carson McCullers died from a stroke and subsequent brain hemorrhage in Nyack, New York.
McCullers adapted her 1946 novel of the same name into a 1949 play that was a smash onstage and later a hit film. Though the play is available in collections, if you're looking for a standalone edition, this one's dandy.
With compassion, veracity and wit, in The Member of the Wedding Carson McCullers depicts the intrinsically enmeshed lives of whites and blacks in the American South. Julie Harris became a star playing the awkward, twelve-year-old tomboy Frankie Adams, who falls deeply in love with her older brother and his fiance. Exhilarated by her naive conviction that being a member of their wedding means she will become what she calls the "we of me", Frankie is devastated when she learns she is not invited on the honeymoon.
Bernice Sadie Brown, who has experienced a lifetime of love and loss, is a surrogate mother for Frankie. Portrayed on stage and in the film versions by the great Ethel Waters, Bernice is an epic character, fiercely loyal, down-to-earth, and centered by deep faith.
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