Monday, July 12, 2010

Speaking of Mark Twain: the autobiography

There are some nice new details in the NY Times on the unexpurgated Twain autobiography, volume one of which will be published this coming November. Here's why it's new: 'Versions of the autobiography have been published before, in 1924, 1940 and 1959. But the original editor, Albert Bigelow Paine, was a stickler for propriety, cutting entire sections he thought offensive; his successors imposed a chronological cradle-to-grave narrative that Twain had specifically rejected, altered his distinctive punctuation, struck additional material they considered uninteresting and generally bowed to the desire of Twain’s daughter Clara, who died in 1962, to protect her father’s image.' From now on, Mr. Clemens will speak for himself!

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