Mittwoch, Mai 10, 2006

GORE VIDAL / born october 3, 1925 / PART 1

A narcissist is someone better looking than you are.
(Gore Vidal)

Gore Vidal in his younger days:

Gore Vidal is one of the most luminous and exciting artists of the American cultural life. He is a writer of novels, plays and essays, but also an actor.

In 198o I’ve seen the opulent film “Caligula” … this was my first encounter with the work of Gore Vidal.
But I have to admit that I seriously started to concern myself with him and his work, after he paid a visit to Vienna in 2004, invited by “The Renner Institute” within the scope of the series “Voices from America”.

Born into a wealthy family in 1925, Eugene Luther Gore Vidal has politics in his blood. Vidal's maternal grandfather was Thomas P. Gore, a powerful U.S. senator from Oklahoma.
But it's as a novelist and critic that Vidal actually made his mark. After graduating high school in 1943, Vidal enlisted in the army. He never saw battle and, out of boredom, began writing his first novel. Based on firsthand experiences aboard an army freighter, Williwaw (1946) was published along with a host of other postwar war novels and received high marks.

Eschewing college, Vidal moved to New York to write. His second novel disappointed him, though it received good reviews, and he decided to take a bigger risk with his next one.

Although The City and the Pillar (1948) is now considered a classic of gay literature, its frank discussion of an affair between two young men and its daring suggestion that homosexual relationships were natural made reviewers' tongues wag. Vidal dedicated the novel to "J.T." and loosely based one of the characters on his first male lover, Jimmie Trimble. Despite the controversial subject matter, the novel rushed onto the bestseller lists.

Some prominent critics refused to review Vidal's next five novels, possibly out of homophobia. The lack of attention marginalized his writing. To make ends meet, he went into television, movies, theater, and politics.


Blogger Cocaine Jesus said...

fantastic evalution of a vital character.

1:37 nachm.  
Blogger Spencer said...

He sure was hot back in his prime wasn't he?

2:57 nachm.  
Blogger castor said...

to Cocaine Jesus:
Yes, and the fresh breeze of his spirit is still blowing in this day and we can only hope that it will drive away the poisoned haze caused by the current regime of plutocracy in USA.

4:54 nachm.  
Blogger castor said...

to Spencer:
I think so! He was tto cute to be a monk :-)

4:55 nachm.  
Blogger Trudging said...

You got to love him!

6:38 nachm.  
Blogger castor said...

to Trudging:
You are right, Trudge! I do love him, that means I adore him, for he isn't an opportunist and hypocrite in our now so dishonest "western" part of our planet,

7:46 nachm.  
Blogger Ryan said...

awesome uncle cant wait 4 the rest of the story!

8:16 nachm.  
Blogger castor said...

to Ryan:
I knew that you'll like him too! He is now 81 years old, that means he is "only" 19 years older than me! :-)

uncle Castor

8:31 nachm.  
Blogger Jacky said...

He is/was very beautiful!

I loved Caligula! What a great movie!

2:08 vorm.  
Blogger castor said...

to Jacky:
Did you see Fellini's "Roma"? There he acted as an actor too!

4:55 vorm.  
Blogger Will said...

Maybe we should thank those possibly homophobic book critics--Vidal's contribution to all those other fields has been extremely significant.

There's an interesting passing reference to Gore Vidal in Joan Peyser's book on Leonard Bernstein.
In the latter part of Bernstein's career, she says he attended "homosexual orgies" in Rome, arranged by Vidal, stocked with large numbers of beautiful young men and attended by some of the most important men in Europe.

12:28 vorm.  
Blogger castor said...

to Will:
Thank you for your advice, Will! Just now I've ordered Joan Peyser's book on Leonard Bernstein! :-)

7:19 vorm.  

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