“A writer is a spectator, looking at everything with a highly critical eye.” – Bernard Malamud
Born to Russian Jewish immigrant parents on this date in 1914, Malamud was an American novelist and short story writer best known for his baseball novel, The Natural, although it was his later book The Fixer about anti-Semitism in Tsarist Russia that won him both a National Book Award and the Pulitzer Prize. The Natural recounts the experiences of Roy Hobbs, an individual with great "natural" baseball talent, and spanning decades of Roy's success and his suffering. Starring Robert Redford, the movie had the distinction of being the first film produced by TriStar Pictures and earned 4 Academy Awards.
A young man during the Depression, Malamud scraped together the money to study writing at City College of New York and went on to earn a Master’s degree at Columbia University before teaching many years at Oregon State. A man after my own heart Malamud wrote slowly and carefully, authoring 8 novels and 4 short story collections before his death in 1986.
Known for his honest depiction of both the despair and difficulties immigrants as well as their hope of reaching their dreams despite poverty, he said, “Those who write about life, reflect about life. You see in others who you are.”
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