The second revision in sixty years, this sublime collection ranges over the verse, stories, essays, and journalism of one of the twentieth century's most quotable authors.
In this new twenty-first-century edition, devoted admirers will be sure to find their favorite verse and stories. But a variety of fresh material has also been added to create a fuller, more authentic picture of her life's work. At the heart of her serious work lie her political writings dealing with race, labor, and international politics. "A Dorothy Parker Sampler" blends the sublime and the silly with the terrifying, a sort of tasting menu of verse, stories, essays, political journalism, a speech on writing, plus a catchy off-the-cuff rhyme she never thought to write down.
The introduction of two new sections is intended to provide the richest possible sense of Parker herself. "Self-Portrait" reprints an interview she did in 1956 with The Paris Review, part of a famed ongoing series of conversations ("Writers at Work") conducted with the best of twentieth-century writers.
"Letters: 1905-1962," which might be subtitled "Mrs. Parker Completely Uncensored," presents correspondence written over the period of a half century, beginning in 1905 when twelve-year-old Dottie wrote her father during a summer vacation on Long Island, and concluding with a 1962 missive from Hollywood describing her fondness for Marilyn Monroe.
Features an introduction by Marion Meade and cover illustrations by renowned graphic artist Seth, creator of the comic series Palooka-ville
For more than seventy years, Penguin has been the leading publisher of classic literature in the English-speaking world. With more than 1,700 titles, Penguin Classics represents a global bookshelf of the best works throughout history and across genres and disciplines. Readers trust the series to provide authoritative texts enhanced by introductions and notes by distinguished scholars and contemporary authors, as well as up-to-date translations by award-winning translators.
|Publisher:||Penguin Publishing Group|
|Series:||Penguin Classics Deluxe Edition Series|
|Edition description:||Penguin Classics Deluxe Edition|
|Product dimensions:||5.66(w) x 8.36(h) x 1.57(d)|
|Age Range:||18 Years|
About the Author
Dorothy Parker was born in West End, New Jersey, in 1893 and grew up in New York, attending a Catholic convent school and Miss Dana's School in Morristown, New Jersey. In 1916 she sold some of her poetry to the editor of Vogue, and was subsequently given an editorial position on the magazine, writing captions for fashion photographs and drawings. She then became drama critic of Vanity Fair and the central figure of the celebrated Algonquin Round Table.
Famous for her spoken wit, she showed the same trenchant commentary in her book reviews for The New Yorker and Esquire and in her poems and sketches. Her collection of poems included Not So Deep as a Well and Enough Rope, which became a bestseller; and her collections of stories included Here Lies. She also collaborated with Elmer Rice on a play, Close Harmony and with Arnaud d'Usseau on the play the Ladies of the Corridor. She herself had two Broadway plays written about her and was portrayed as a character in a third. Her cynicism and the concentration of her judgements were famous and she has been closely associated with modern urbane humour.
Her first husband was Edwin Pond Parker II, and although they were divorced some years later, she continued to use his name, which she much preferred to her own of Rothschild. Her second husband was an actor-writer Alan Campbell. They went to Hollywood as a writing team and went through a tempestuous marriage until his death in 1963, when Dorothy Parker returned to New York. She died in 1967.
Marion Meade is the author of Dorothy Parker: What Fresh Hell Is This? and Bobbed Hair and Bathtub Gin: Writers Running Wild in the Twenties. She has also written biographies of Woody Allen, Buster Keaton, Eleanor of Aquitaine, Victoria Woodhull, and Madame Blavatsky, as well as two novels about medieval France.
Seth is an illustrator whose work has been featured in such publications as the Washington Post, Details, Spin, and the New York Times. He is best known for his continuing comic book series Palooka-Ville.
Table of Contents
The Portable Dorothy ParkerIntroduction
Suggestions for Further Reading
Part One: The Original Portable as Arranged by Dorothy Parker in1944
The Lovely Leave
Arrangement in Black and White
The Standard of Living
The Wonderful Old Gentleman
Song of the Shirt, 1941
Enough Rope (Poems)
A Telephone Call
Here We Are
Dusk before Fireworks
You Were Perfectly Fine
Mrs. Hofstadter on Josephine Street
Soldiers of the Republic
The Last Tea
Sunset Gun (Poems)
Just A Little One
Lady with a Lamp
The Little Hours
Glory in the Daytime
New York to Detroit
Death and Taxes (Poems)
The Custard Heart
From the Diary of a New York Lady
Clothe the Naked
War Song (Poem)
Part Two: Other Writings
Such a Pretty Little Picture, Smart Set, December 1922
Advice to the Little Peyton Girl, Harper's Bazaar, February 1933
The Game, Cosmopolitan, December 1948
The Banquet of Crow, The New Yorker, December 14, 1957
The Bolt Behind the Blue, Esquire, December 1958
Interior Desecration, Vogue, April 15, 1917
Week's End, (New York) Life, July 21, 1927
My Home Town, McCall's, January 1928
Not Enough, New Masses, March 14, 1939
Destructive Decoration, House and Garden, November 1942
From Vanity Fair, 1918-1919
Hedda Gabler by Henrik Ibsen
An Ideal Husband by Oscar Wilde
Redemption by Leo Tolstoi
Dear Brutus by J. M. Barrie
From Ainslee's (In Broadway Playhouses), 1921
The Emperor Jones by Eugene O'Neill
Ziegfeld Follies of 1921
From The New Yorker (Substituting for Robert Benchley), 1931
The Barretts of Wimpole Street by Rudolf Besier
Give Me Yesterday by A. A. Milne
The Admirable Crichton by J. M. Barrie
From The New Yorker (Constant Reader), 1927-1931
The President's Daughter by Nan Britton
Men Without Women by Ernest Hemingway
Happiness by William Lyon Phelps
A President Is Born by Fannie Hurst; Claire Ambler by Booth Tarkington
Appendicitis by Thew Wright, M.D.; Art of the Night by George Jean Nathan
The House at Pooh Corner by A. A. Milne
Round Up by Ring Lardner
Forty Thousand Sublime and Beautiful Thoughts, compiled by Charles Noel Douglas
The Glass Key by Dashiell Hammett
Dawn by Theodore Dreiser
The Grandmother of the Aunt of the Gardener
From The New York Times Book Review, 1957
The Road to Miltown, Or Under the Spreading Atrophy by S. J. Perelman
From Esqure, 1958-1959
The American Earthquake by Edmund Wilson; The Subterraneans by Jack Kerouac; Ice Palace by Edna Ferber
Breakfast at Tiffany's by Truman Capote; The Poorhouse Fair by John Updike
The Years With Ross by James Thurber
Part Three: A Dorothy Parker Sampler
Any Porch, Vanity Fair, September 15, 1915
Sorry, the Line Is Busy, Life, April 21, 1921
In the Throes, (New York) Life, September 16, 1924
For R.C.B., The New Yorker, January 7, 1928
Untitled Birthday Lament, c. 1927
The Garter, The New Yorker, September 8, 1928
Sophisticated Poetryand the Hell With It, New Masses, June 27, 1939
Introduction: The Seal in the Bedroom and Other Predicaments, by James Thurber, 1932
The Function of the Writer, Address, Esquire Magazine Symposium, October 1958 (extract)
New York at 6:30 P.M., Esquire, November 1964
Self-Portrait from The Paris Review, "Writers at Work," 1956
To Henry Rothschild, 1905
To Henry Rothschild, 1905
To Harold Ross, 1927
To Harold Ross, no date
To Seward Collins, 1927
To Helen Rothschild Droste, 1929
To Robert Charles Benchley, 1929
To Sara and Gerald Murphy, 1934
To F. Scott Fitzgerald, 1934
To Alexander Woolcott, 1935
To Harold Guinzburg, 1935
To Helen Rothschild Grimwood, c. 1939
To Malcolm Cowley, 1958
To Morton Zabel, 1958
To John Patrick, 1962
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Dorothy Parker is possibly the wittiest and most honest female author that I have ever read. Her realistic short stories and hilarious poems are also eloquently written. Some of my favorites out of the book are "Resume", "The Lovely Leave", and "Big Blonde". A read you will read again and again.
She is amazingly brilliant writing style andhumorous wit.
How many times have I seen bon mots attributed to Dorothy Parker? I thought I'd enjoy reading more of what she had written. Evidently, she was quite the wit in her day.Turns out anything she wrote that was witty, I had already read!I enjoyed a few of her short stories, especially the ones that were written during the War...and guess what?: her husband was serving overseas. The ring of authenticity was, well, to write as she did, authentic.In a few of the reviews she wrote I think I saw the hint of what made her current "back in the day." Unfortunately, humor doesn't always wear well. Her "letters" were dreadfully boring....not understanding fully the intended audience nor to what she was alluding. Evidently her son suffered from Tuberculosis. The scourge of her day, and becoming one in ours, too.All in all, it is one of those books where I can say, "I'm glad I read it," but am happy to never need to read it again. A good book to put in the guest room bookcase....
Most of the books she reviewed in this collection I've never heard of, so I didn't do much more than skim a couple. And I thought her short stories were nothing special and I ended up forgetting most of them a couple days after I'd read them. However, her poems are some of the best I've ever read and they're all right there at your fingertips in this volume, and I think that that makes this book worthy of four stars.
This collection holds so many gems from Parker. It has her acidic poetry, her tragic short stories, letters to family and friends, book reviews and more. I loved reading it and felt like I got a chance to read a bit from all of her different mediums of writing. She had a great talent for blending humor and real moral points together without hitting you over the head with it. I would recommend reading only a few things at a time and not trying to read it all in a week or something. Parker is best in small doses if you want to truly appreciate her wit. Otherwise you get used to her voice and forget how unique it really was for a woman from that time period.
Parker's poems are short, sparse, and witty; I can hardly ever sit down with this book and not feel compelled to read a particulary memorable gem aloud. Her short stories reveal surprising depth, and her "Constant Reader" reviews (especially the AA Milne ones!) are a real riot. I've found that it's an excellent bedside companion. No subject is sacred when it comes to being a target of Parker's poetic wit. Her gems are enjoyable, and you'll find yourself quoting them at every opportunity. Her short stories reveal a different side of her-- a more meditative, melancholy mood. Together, in the anthology, they harmonzie and balance each other perfectly. Recommended.
Dorothy Parker is one of my short story idols. Readers who prefer action over rumination may find her stories dull and forgettable, but for the people watchers and neutral cynics, her writing is the cream of the character-driven crop. I can't read too many of them at once, however, because her deadpan descriptions of less-than-perfect people are, while humorous, also pretty depressing. Four stars because the last half of this edition consists of outdated reviews instead of more wit-infused gold.
How I love Parker's witty yet mournful poetry. Included here is a fine colection of her short stories as well.
Parker's works and her contributions to the American short-story genre are sinfully neglected. This book is an excellent place to remedy that oversight.
Parker displayed a keen wit and the ability to deliver short but piercing observations on American life in the early twentieth century. Her short stories amuse and yet almost always depress as well. Her poems are bitter little pills. Her book and play reviews are not to be missed. Some of her very best writing is in these under appreciated gems.
Keep in mind, it's a collection. It's not a novel. It's great for conversation starters at parties...to read a funny short story or a couple of Ms. Parker's famous witticisms. I would never suggest reading this book from cover-to-cover; but it is perfect for a light, intelligent, and entertaining "in-between" read.
An interesting insight into Dorothy Parker. This book is alive with her prose, poetry, and sharp wit. It gives one an idea of what it was like to be a woman in a man's literary world in the early 1900's.
Dorothy Parker's writing is timeless. I've read her works over and over for years and she has a permanent place in my collection. A timeless voice, wit and a boldness that made her name in her day.
This book highlights the brilliant Dorthy Parker in all aspects of her life, and her many talents as a woman writer. Add water and you've got yourself Dorthy Parker.. hence, the Portable Dorthy Parker!
Dorothy Parkers Brilliantly imaginitive pessimistic, intelligent style creates an intensly rich book including wonderful and interesting prose and short stories. Because of her highly sincere and amusing topics she is one of my favorite writers. some of my personal favorites are Big Blonde, frustration, and res