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The Man Who Wasn't There: A Life of Ernest Hemingway

The Man Who Wasn't There: A Life of Ernest Hemingway
Richard Bradford

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Description

Ernest Hemingway was an involuntary chameleon, who would shift seamlessly from a self-cultivated image of hero, aesthetic radical, and existential non-conformist to a figure made up at various points of selfishness, hypocrisy, self-delusion, narcissism and arbitrary vindictiveness. Richard Bradford shows that Hemingway's work is by parts erratic and unique because it was tied into these unpredictable, bizarre features of his personality. Impressionism and subjectivity always play some part in the making of literary works. Some authors try to subdue them while others treat them as the essentials of creativity but they endure as a ubiquitous element of all literature. They are the writer's private signature, their authorial fingerprint. In this ground-breaking and intensely revealing biography, which includes a complete reassessment of Hemingway's oeuvre Hemingway's unfixed personality is shown to be the index to why and how he wrote as he did.

Author Info

Richard Bradford is Research Professor in English at Ulster University and Visiting Professor at the University of Avignon. He has published over 25 acclaimed books, including a biography of Philip Larkin, which was an Independent Book of the Year, the authorised biography of Alan Sillitoe, a life of Kingsley Amis and a biography of Kingsley's son, Martin. He has been on the longlist for the James Tait Black Memorial Prize, has written for The Spectator and The Sunday Times and has been interviewed on his work for various BBC Radio Arts Programmes, as well as appearing on the Channel 4 Series `Writers in their Own Words', talking mainly on Martin Amis and the post-1960s generation of British novelists. The BBC TV programme `Through the Lens of Larkin', in which he appeared, was inspired by his The Importance of Elsewhere. Philip Larkin's Photographs.

Review

"The Man Who Wasn't There will make even very knowledgeable Hemingway readers want to re-examine what they believe they know about the man and his work. Many familiar episodes in Hemingway's life are seen afresh as Bradford shrewdly reassesses previous biographers' work in the light of Hemingway's own testimony, most significantly the shocking disclosures of unpublished letters and other unseen documents. For Bradford, Hemingway was constitutionally unable to tell truth from fiction-not simply in his declining, fame-wracked years but from the beginning of his adult life. This is revisionist biography at its best-well informed and fearless."
Carl Rollyson, author of Beautiful Exile: The Life of Martha Gellhorn, "Richard Bradford is as dynamic a writer as his subject and brings Hemingway and his remarkable worlds
for there were many, from Paris to Cuba, from Mombasa to Madrid
to life with zest and wit. Bradford bases his new study on years of meticulous research in the archives, revealing the significance of numerous previously unpublished letters. Bradford not only helps us understand the deeply flawed, larger-than-life Hemingway but also offers intriguing insights into his lovers and wives, his literary friends and his enemies. Above all, he offers some powerful correctives to what have become powerful myths about the 'man who wasn't there'."
Anna Beer, author of Milton: Poet, Pamphleteer and Patriot

Bibliographic Info

Imprint: I.B.Tauris
Publisher: I.B.Tauris & Co. Ltd.

Hardback
ISBN: 9781788311588
Publication Date: 30 Oct 2018
Number of Pages: 256
Height: 216
Width: 135

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