Terry Southern and the American Grotesque


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About the Book

This work offers a critical biography and analysis of the varied literary output of novels, short stories, screenplays, poetry, articles and essays of the American writer Terry Southern. The book explores Southern’s career from his early days in Paris with friends like Samuel Beckett, to swinging London in such company as the Rolling Stones, to filmmaking in Los Angeles and Europe with luminaries like Stanley Kubrick. His writings are examined in chronological order. David Tully was granted unprecedented access by Terry Southern’s family to rare, unpublished work from his private archives. This study offers the first comprehensive examination of the career of this major American writer.

About the Author(s)

David Tully is a screenwriter living in Dubai. He has taught at New York University, worked in the film industry in Los Angeles and South Africa, and written for television in Manhattan and Munich. He currently has several films in production.

Bibliographic Details

David Tully

Format: softcover (6 x 9)
Pages: 232
Bibliographic Info: notes, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2010
pISBN: 978-0-7864-4450-2
eISBN: 978-0-7864-5637-6
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments      vii
Foreword by Nile Southern      1
Preface      5

Part One: The “Quality Lit” Years
Introduction to Part One      9
1. Texas Summers      19
2. You’re Too Hip, Baby      25
3. Don’t Get Hot      30
4. Give Me Your Hump!      47
5. The Mad Tradition      65
6. Making It Hot      74
7. Grooving in NY      82
8. Hipster      96
9. Beyond the Beat      107
Conclusion to Part One: Bedtime Stories      115

Part Two: The Movie Years
Introduction to Part Two      123
10. The Great Stanley K.      128
11. Riding the Black Humor Wave      136
12. The Southern Cult      140
13. The Hollywood Kid      149
14. Excessive Verbiage      155
15. The Epic Sensibility      160
16. Come and Get It      163
17. King Weirdo      167
18. Blue Movies      171
19. Lost Weekends      177
20. Grossing Out      183
21. Saturday Nights of Terror, Days of Weird      188
22. Limbo      194
Conclusion to Part Two: The Priest of Pagan Nature Laid to Rest      200

Source Notes      203
Bibliography      213
Index      219