An intimate biography of a great American writer; He rose from a childhood as the illegitimate son of a financial titan to become the man Sartre called the greatest writer of our time. A progressive writer who turned his passions into the groundbreaking U.S.A. trilogy, John Dos Passos later embraced conservative causes. At the height of his career he was considered a peer of Hemingway and Fitzgerald, yet he died in obscurity in 1970. Award-winning biographer Virginia Spencer Carr examines the contradictions of Dos Passos's life with an indepth study of the man. Using the writer's letters and journals, and with assistance from the Dos Passos family, Carr reconstructs an epic life, one of literary acclaim and bitter obscurity, restless wandering and happy marriage, friendship with Edmund Wilson and feuds with Hemingway. First published to acclaim in 1984, Dos Passos remains the definitive personal portrait of the author.
Virginia Spencer Carr was formerly the John B. and Elena Diaz-Verson Chair of English Letters at Georgia State University. Her other works include the forthcoming Paul Bowles: A Life (Scribner, 2004), Understanding Carson McCullers (South Carolina, 1991), and The Lonely Hunter: A Biography of Carson McCullers (Doubleday, 1975), winner of the Francis Butler Simkins Prize of the Southern Historical Society and Longwood College. Carr lives in Atlanta, Georgia.