|Birth Day:||April 26, 1914|
|Death Date:||Mar 18, 1986 (age 71)|
American fiction writer whose baseball-themed novel, The Natural, was made into a movie starring Robert Redford. His 1966 work, The Fixer, was the recipient of both the Pulitzer Prize and the National Book Award.
As per our current Database, Bernard Malamud died on Mar 18, 1986 (age 71).
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He received degrees from both the City College of New York and Columbia University. He later taught English night classes in New York City.
Bernard Malamud was born in 1914 in Brooklyn, New York, the son of Bertha (née Fidelman) and Max Malamud, Russian Jewish immigrants. A brother, Eugene, born in 1917, suffered from mental illness, lived a hard and lonely life and died in his fifties. Malamud entered adolescence at the start of the Great Depression. From 1928 to 1932, Bernard attended Erasmus Hall High School in Brooklyn. During his youth, he saw many films and enjoyed relating their plots to his school friends. He was especially fond of Charlie Chaplin's comedies. Malamud worked for a year at $4.50 a day (equivalent to $84 in 2019) as a teacher-in-training, before attending college on a government loan. He received his B.A. degree from City College of New York in 1936. In 1942, he obtained a master's degree from Columbia University, writing a thesis on Thomas Hardy. He was excused from military service in World War II because he was the sole support of his widower father. He first worked for the Bureau of the Census in Washington D.C., then taught English in New York, mostly high school night classes for adults.
In 1942, Malamud met Ann De Chiara (November 1, 1917 – March 20, 2007), an Haitian-American Roman Catholic, and a 1939 Cornell University graduate. They married on November 6, 1945, despite the opposition of their respective parents. Ann typed his manuscripts and reviewed his writing. Ann and Bernard had two children, Paul (b. 1947) and Janna (b. 1952). Janna Malamud Smith is the author of a memoir about her father, titled My Father Is A Book.
Malamud wrote slowly and carefully; he was not especially prolific. He is the author of eight novels and four collections of short stories. The posthumously published Complete Stories contains 55 short stories and is 629 pages long. Maxim Lieber served as his literary agent in 1942 and 1945.
Malamud was renowned for his short stories, often oblique allegories set in a dreamlike urban ghetto of immigrant Jews. Of Malamud, Flannery O'Connor wrote: "I have discovered a short-story writer who is better than any of them, including myself." He published his first stories in 1943, "Benefit Performance" in Threshold and "The Place Is Different Now" in American Preface. In the early 1950s, his stories began appearing in Harper's Bazaar, Partisan Review, and Commentary.
He completed his first novel, The Light Sleeper, in 1948, but later burned the manuscript. His first published novel was The Natural (1952), which has become one of his best remembered and most symbolic works. The story traces the life of Roy Hobbs, an unknown middle-aged baseball player who achieves legendary status with his stellar talent. This novel was made into a 1984 movie starring Robert Redford (described by the film writer David Thomson as "poor baseball and worse Malamud").
Starting in 1949, Malamud taught four sections of freshman composition each semester at Oregon State University (then Oregon State College, or OSC), an experience fictionalized in his 1961 novel A New Life. Because he lacked the Ph.D., he was not allowed to teach literature courses, and for a number of years his rank was that of instructor. In those days, OSC, a land grant university, placed little emphasis on the teaching of humanities or the writing of fiction. While at OSC, he devoted three days out of every week to his writing, and gradually emerged as a major American author. In 1961, he left OSC to teach creative writing at Bennington College, a position he held until retirement. In 1967, he was made a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.
In 1967, his novel The Fixer, about anti-semitism in the Russian Empire, won both the National Book Award for Fiction and the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction. His other novels include Dubin's Lives, a powerful evocation of middle age which uses biography to recreate the narrative richness of its protagonists' lives, and The Tenants, perhaps a meta-narrative on Malamud's own writing and creative struggles, which, set in New York City, deals with racial issues and the emergence of black/African American literature in the American 1970s landscape.
Malamud died in Manhattan in 1986, at the age of 71. He is buried in Mt. Auburn Cemetery in Cambridge, Massachusetts.
Currently, Bernard Malamud is 108 years, 5 months and 0 days old. Bernard Malamud will celebrate 109th birthday on a Wednesday 26th of April 2023.
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