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1908
Hugo Gernsback (1884-1967) published his 1st edition of Modern Electrics. The purpose was to increase the popularity of science among the general public.
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1908
Kenneth Grahame (1859-1952) of Edinburgh, Scotland, wrote the classic British children’s book "Wind in the Willows." It was made into a movie in 1997.
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1908
Arnold Bennet, English writer, published “the Old Wives’ Tale,“ later regarded as his finest novel.
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1909 Mar 8
Hinton Rowan Helper (b.1829) of North Carolina, writer and former US consul in Buenos Aires (1861-1866), blocked the door of his Washington, DC., rooming house, turned on the gas and asphyxiated himself.
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1909 Apr 13
Eudora Welty (d.2001), Southern writer, was born in Jackson, Miss. Her books included “Delta Wedding” and “The Optimist's Daughter” (1972). In 1998 Ann Waldron published "Eudora Welty: A Writer’s Life."
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1909
Sergei Bulgakov (1871-1944), Russian philosopher and economist, authored “Vekhi,” in which he describes the sorry state of the Russian intelligentsia.
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1909
Norman Angell (1872-1967), English journalist, authored “Europe's Optical Illusion,” in which he argued that war was going out of fashion due to the growing integration of the global economy. In 1910 it was expanded and retitled as “The Great Illusion.”
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1909
Beatrix Potter (1866-1943), English writer, authored the children’s novel “The Tale of Ginger and Pickles.” The book tells the story of shopkeepers Ginger, a tomcat, and Pickles, a terrier. Margaret Thatcher later regarded it as the only business book worth reading.
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1909
Selma Lagerdorf (1858-1940), Swedish novelist, won the Nobel Prize in Literature.
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1910 Apr 21
Author Mark Twain (b.1835), born as Samuel Langhorne Clemens, died in Redding, Conn. His work included "A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court," "The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn," "The Adventures of Tom Sawyer," and "More Tramps Abroad." His short story "The War Prayer" was published after his death. In 1912 Albert Bigelow Paine authored "Mark Twain: A Biography." In 1959 Charles Neider authored "The Autobiography of Mark Twain." In 1966 Justin Kaplan authored "Mr. Clemens and Mark Twain: A Biography." In 1997 Andrew Hoffman authored "Inventing Mark Twain, The Lives of Samuel Langhorn Clemens. In 2005 Ron Powers authored “Mark Twain: A Life.” In 2007 Peter Krass authored “Ignorance, Confidence, and Filthy Rich Friends: The Business Adventures of Mark Twain.” In 2010 Jerome Loving authored “Mark Twain: The Adventures of Samuel L. Clemens.” In 2010 Volume I of Twain’s dictated autobiography was published. In 2013 Volume II was published.
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1910 May 28
Kalman Mikszath (b.1847), Hungarian satirical novelist, died.
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1910 Nov 7
Leo Tolstoy (b.1828), Russian earl and writer (War & Peace), died at the rural Astapovo train station [OS, NS=Nov 20]. In 1967 Henri Troyat’s “Tolstoy” became available in English. In 2007 Leah Bendavid-Val authored “Song Without Words: The Photographs and Diaries of Countess Sophia Tolstoy.” In 2011 Rosamund Bartlett authored “Tolstoy: A Russian Life.”
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1910
Herman Lons, German writer, authored his novel “The Warwolf: a peasant chronicle.” It was set in the time of the Thirty Years War (1618-1648), during which some 10 million people died including 4 million Germans. In 2006 it was made available in English.
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1910
E.M. Forster (1879-1970) wrote "Howard’s End," his next to last novel and good description of the English class system.
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1911 May 15
Max Frisch (d.1991), Swiss architect and writer, was born.
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1911 Jun 30
Czeslaw Milosz (d.2004), Polish poet and critic and Nobel winner, was born in Lithuania. In 2001 his Polish "Milosz’s ABC’s" was published in English.
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1911
Hugo Gernsback (1884-1967) included the 1st chapter of his fictional, futuristic serial called Ralph 124C41+ in his Modern Electrics magazine.
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1912 Jan 15
Henry Du Pré Labouchere (b.1831), prominent British politician and writer/publisher, died in Florence, Italy. In 1885, Labouchere drafted the Labouchere Amendment, outlawing "gross indecency," a euphemism for sodomy. This amendment was enacted to permit the prosecution of Oscar Wilde, who was incarcerated for the crime.
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1912 Aug 10
Leonard Woolf (1880-1969), English man of letters, married writer Virginia Duckworth (b.1882). Virginia Woolf committed suicide in 1941.
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1912
H.G. Wells wrote his novel "Marriage."
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1912
James Loeb, retired banker, began his Loeb Classical Library. Together with publisher William Heinemann they put out classical selections in translation along with original Greek or Latin text. In 2006 a 500th title in the series: “A Loeb Classical Library Reader.”
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1912
The novella “Hadji Murad” by Leo Tolstoy (1828-1910) was published. Murad (d.1852) was an important Chechen leader during the resistance of the Caucasian peoples in 1711-1864 against the Russian Empire's seizure of the region.
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1912
Max Beerbohm (1872-1956), English essayist, published “A Christmas Garland,” a collection of 17 poetic parodies with a Christmas theme.
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1912
Theodore Dreiser (1871-1945) authored “The Financier,” the 1st book of his “Trilogy of Desire,” an Iliad of American capitalism.
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1913 Nov 7
Albert Camus (d.1960), French philosopher, novelist, and dramatist best known for his book "The Stranger" (1942) was born on an Algerian farm.
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1913
D.H. Lawrence (1885-1930), English writer, published his novel "Sons and Lovers."
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1913
Irish writer Howard Ward authored “The Mystery of Dr. Fu Manchu,” his first Fu Manchu novel, under the pen-name Sax Rohmer. It collated various short stories published the preceding year.
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1913
Henri Fournier (1886-1914) authored “Le Grand Meaulnes” under the pen name Alain-Fournier. It became one of France’s most popular novels.
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1914 May 26
Jacob A. Riis (b.1849), Denmark-born author and photographer, died in Barre, Mass. His books included “How the Other Half Lives: Studies Among the Tenements of New York” (1890) and his autobiography “The Making of an American” (1901). In 2008 Tom Buk-Swienty’s “The Other Half: The Life of Jacob Riis and the World of Immigrant America” was published. The original Danish version was translated by his wife, Annette.
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1914 Jun
In San Francisco the film version of “The Valley of the Moon” a 1913 novel by Jack London (1876-1916), premiered at Grauman’s Imperial Theater, 1077 Market St.
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1914 Sep 5
Charles Peguy (d.1914), French poet and writer, died. "It is impossible to write ancient history because we lack source materials, and impossible to write modern history because we have far too many."
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1914
H.G. Wells authored "The World Set Free," which included references to an atomic bomb.
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1914
Ambrose Bierce (b.1842), American writer, died. His books included “The Devil's Dictionary” (originally published as The Cynic’s Word Book in 1906) and “An Occurrence Owl Creek Bridge.” He vanished in Mexico after a letter sent from Chihuahua on Dec 26, 1913.
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1914
Theodore Dreiser (1871-1945) authored “The Titan,” a sequel to his 1912 novel “the Financier.”
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1915 Jul 1
Jean Stafford, American writer (The Mountain Lion), was born.
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1915
The short story “The Metamorphosis” by Franz Kafka (1883-1924), a civil servant working in Prague, was first published in a small German magazine.
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1916 Feb 28
Henry James (b.1843), US-British writer (Bostonians), died in London. His books included “The American“ (1877) and “The Golden Bowl” (1904). In 2004 Colm Toibin authored “The Master,” a novel that explores James’ private life. In 2007 Peter Brooks authored “Henry James Goes to Paris.”
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1916 Apr 12
Beverly Cleary, American writer, was born. Her children’s books included the Ramona Quimby series which stemmed from “Henry Huggins” (1950).
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1916 Nov 22
Jack London, American writer, died in Glen Ellen, Ca., of a kidney disease, gastrointestinal uremic poisoning. An overdose of morphine was also suspected. He had written 50 books. London produced 200 short stories, 400 nonfiction articles and 20 novels. A 1998 biography by Alex Kershaw was titled: "Jack London: A Life." In 2010 James L. Haley authored “wolf: The Lives of jack London.
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1917 Sep 27
Louis Auchincloss (d.2010), novelist, was born in Lawrence, NY. His work included “Portrait in Brownstone, The Embezzler,” and ”Watchfires.
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1918 Mar 9
Frank Morrison Spillane (d.2006), mystery writer [Mickey Spillane], was born in Brooklyn. His Mike Hammer crime novels later sold over 200 million copies. His books included “Kiss Me Deadly” and “The Erection Set.”
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1918 Dec 11
Alexander Solzhenitsyn (d.2008), Russian writer, was born. He won the 1970 Nobel Peace Prize and is famous for “One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich” (1962) and "The Gulag Archipelago" (1973). Daniel J. Mahoney later authored "Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn: The Ascent From Ideology."
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1918
Arthur Ransome (1884-1967), British agent and writer, wrote a propaganda pamphlet titled: “On Behalf of Russia: An Open Letter to America.” In 2009 Roland Chambers authored “The Last Englishman: The Double Life of Arthur Ransome.”
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1919 Jan 1
J.D. Salinger, American novelist, was born in NYC. In 1951 Jerome David Salinger published "The Catcher in the Rye," which became a bible for American teenagers.
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1919 May 6
Frank Lyman Baum (62), American author, died in Los Angeles. In 1897 he wrote and published “Mother Goose in Prose,” a collection of Mother Goose rhymes written as prose stories, and illustrated by Maxfield Parrish. Baum and illustrator W. W. Denslow published “The Wonderful World of Oz” in 1900.
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1920 Aug
Hugo Gernsback changed the title of his magazine Modern Electrics to Science and Invention and began to include 2 fiction pieces in every issue.
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1920
F. Scott Fitzgerald (23) authored his 1st novel “This Side of Paradise.”
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1920
Ernst Juenger (Jünger) (d.1998) published his first book "In Storms of Steel." The book glorified the horrors of WW I and put him in the rank of militant nationalists whose writings helped pave the way for the Third Reich. In 2003 Michael Hoffman made a translation, Storm of Steel, to English.
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1921 Jan 5
Friedrich Durrenmatt (d.1990), Swiss author and playwright, was born.
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1921 Feb 9
James Huneker (b.1857), American musical writer and critic, died.
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1921 Feb
The obscenity trial over the publication of James Joyce’s Ulysses in The Little Review , an American literary magazine, effectively banned publication of Joyce's novel in the United States.
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1921
Yevgeny Zamyatin (d.1937), Russian author, completed his novel “We.” It offended communist censors and did not appear in print in Russia until 1988. Editions outside Russia became available in 1924. In 2006 Natasha Randall made a new English translation.
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1921
Anatole France (d.1924), French satiric master, won the Nobel Prize in Literature. His books included “Thais” (1890), “Penguin Island” (1908) and “Revolt of the Angels” (1914).
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1921
In China Lu Xun (1881-1936) authored his allegorical novella “The Story of Ah Q.” It contained damning insights into the “feudal” thinking of the time. Lu Xun was the pen name of Zhou Shuren. He was later enshrined as the father of modern Chinese literature.
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1922
F. Scott Fitzgerald authored his 2nd novel “The Beautiful and Damned.”
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1922
Franz Kafka (1883-1924) authored his novel “The Castle.”
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1923 Jan 31
Norman Mailer (d.2007), NYC mayoral candidate, novelist (Naked and the Dead), was born in NJ. In 1999 Mary V. Dearborn published "Norman Mailer: A Biography."
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1923 Oct 15
Italo Calvino (d.1985), Italian novelist (Winter's Night a Traveler), was born in Cuba.
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1923
Rudyard Kipling authored “The Irish Guards in the Great War,” a history of the unit that his son fought and died for in WW I.
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1923
Le Corbusier (1887-1965), Swiss-French architect and writer, authored “Vers une architecture” (Towards a New Architecture) (1923).
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