Fun Facts Friday: Jean Stafford

June 1, 2012

Today, 1 June is the birthday of author Jean Stafford (1 June, 1915 – 26 March, 1979. Ms. Stafford was an American short story writer and novelist who was the winner of the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction for The Collected Stories of Jean Stafford.

Jean Stafford

Books by Jean Stafford

1 ) During her career Ms. Stafford wrote three novels. The first, Boston Adventure, was a best seller.

2 ) Ms. Stafford’s first marriage to poet Robert Lowell ended badly with her suffering both physical and emotional scars.

3 ) In her story The Interior Castle Stafford describes her trauma from a serious car accident she was in and in which she suffered disfigurement (Lowell was driving).

4 ) Stafford’s second marriage to Oliver Jensen, a Life Magazine photographer, also ended in divorce. Third time’s a charm, Ms. Stafford finally found happiness being married to The New York Times writer A. J. Liebling.

5 ) After Liebling’s death, about four years after the marriage, Stafford stopped writing fiction.

6 ) During her life Stafford worked as an instructor at Stephens College, Columbia, Missouri, at the Southern Review and as an adjunct professor at Columbia University.

7 ) Even though Stafford was the youngest of four children, her writing mostly focused on alienation.

8 ) Tragedy seemed to follow Stafford. In college she witnessed the suicide of a roommate, she was severely injured in a car accident (see #3) and her brother Dick was killed in a car accident in France during World War II.

9 ) Ms. Stafford’s short stories appeared in The New Yorker, Vogue, Mademoiselle, Harper’s Bazaar and magazines of literary themes.

10) Stafford suffered from depression, pulmonary disease and was an alcoholic (she died in a rehab center).

Books by Jean Stafford

 Zohar – Man of la Book

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3 Comments

  • Annie June 1, 2012 at 10:17 am

    Love yoru Friday Facts.
    How do you come up with the subjects?

    • Zohar - Man of la Book June 1, 2012 at 1:01 pm

      Thanks for the comment Annie. I do some research a few days before, it’s not as easy as it seems.

  • Laura June 2, 2012 at 4:25 pm

    I LOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOVE Jean Stafford.
    I did a paper on her in highschool

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