Saturday, July 10, 2010

The Autobiography of Mark Twain

This looks fascinating:

....Whether anguishing over American military interventions abroad or delivering jabs at Wall Street tycoons, this Twain is strikingly contemporary. Though the autobiography also contains its share of homespun tales, some of its observations about American life are so acerbic — at one point Twain refers to American soldiers as “uniformed assassins” — that his heirs and editors, as well as the writer himself, feared they would damage his reputation if not withheld.....


  1. Nice way to mark the centennial of his death. It sounds like this will be a greatly expanded edition from the one released 10 years ago.

  2. I read the recent Power bio and really enjoyed it, but still had no idea that Twain had been so heavily censored over the years. I can hardly wait to see what these volumes have to say about the world, since these are very similar times in many ways.

  3. I think I am going to buy them too. Big fan of his political writings. He sized up "Manifest Destiny" pretty well.

  4. It's interesting how these literary reputations are forged over time. And in this case, sounds like his has been sanitized, even at his own urging. Three volumes should be a great read for next winter -- or whenever they become available. I wonder if the online version will be free?

    I hope you take a look at the War Lovers at some point. The author is clearly motivated to write by the Iraq War, but I didn't get the impression that it just functioned as some sort of analogy. This was Twain's world. Too bad he wasn't around over the last decade -- or the editors didn't chose to dust him off then!