Mary Renault

Mary Renault, pseud. of Mary Challens, 1905–83, English novelist, b. London. After receiving her nursing degree in 1936, she emigrated to South Africa. She was best-known for her historical novels about ancient Greece and Rome, including The King Must Die (1958), The Mask of Apollo (1966), Fire from Heaven (1970), and The Persian Boy (1973). Renault's works often revolve around homosexuality and the struggles of men and women to forge a sexual identity; this struggle is the central focus of The Charioteer (1955), a study of soldiers in World War II, widely regarded as her finest novel.

See studies by P. Wolfe (1969) and B. F. Dick (1972).

The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright© 2014, The Columbia University Press.

Selected full-text books and articles on this topic

The Masks of Mary Renault: A Literary Biography
Caroline Zilboorg.
University of Missouri Press, 2001
The Hellenism of Mary Renault
Bernard F. Dick.
Southern Illinois University Press, 1972
Masquing the Phallus: Genital Ambiguity in Mary Renault's Historical Novels
Hoberman, Ruth.
Twentieth Century Literature, Vol. 42, No. 2, Summer 1996
Who's Who in Lesbian and Gay Writing
Gabriele Griffin.
Routledge, 2002
Librarian’s tip: "Renault, Mary" begins on p. 165
Who's Who in Contemporary Gay and Lesbian History: From World War II to the Present Day
Robert Aldrich; Garry Wotherspoon.
Routledge, 2001
Librarian’s tip: "Renault, Mary" begins on p. 348
The Seduction of the Mediterranean: Writing, Art, and Homosexual Fantasy
Robert Aldrich.
Routledge, 1993
Librarian’s tip: "Peyrefitte, Yourcenar, Renault" begins on p. 187
Before She Went Greek: Novelist Mary Renault Threw Her Own Gay Sexuality into Her Gripping Novels of Ancient Greece-But before That She Wrote about the Gay Life She Lived
Dehnart, Andy.
The Advocate (The national gay & lesbian newsmagazine), July 22, 2003
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