Friday, February 22, 2013

Punching Papa: Callaghan, Hemingway And Fitzgerald

Steve King at notes that today is Morley Callaghan's birthday and tells the story of his boxing match with fellow writer Ernest Hemingway, with F. Scott Fitzgerald as timekeeper.

On this day in 1903 the Canadian novelist and short story writer, Morley Callaghan was born. Though prolific and successful, Callaghan was so overlooked by the critics for much of his career that Edmund Wilson thought him "the most unjustly neglected writer in the English language." Much of the attention that Callaghan did receive was not for his twenty novels and story collections but for That Summer in Paris (1963), a memoir of his Lost Generation days among "a very small, backbiting, gossipy neighborhood" of Latin Quarter expatriates -- Ford Madox Ford, Robert McAlmon, Joyce, Fitzgerald, Hemingway, etc. Callaghan's account of his boxing matches with Hemingway especially raised eyebrows --including those of Norman Mailer in a 1963 review entitled, "Punching Papa": "For the first time one has the confidence that an eyewitness has been able to cut a bonafide trail through the charm, the mystery, and the curious perversity of Hemingway's personality." 

You can read the rest of the piece via the below link:

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