Dorothy Parker

Dorothy Parker (Dorothy Rothschild Parker), 1893–1967, American short-story and verse writer, b. West End, N.J. While serving as drama critic for Vanity Fair (1916–17) and book critic for the New Yorker (1927), she gained an almost legendary reputation for her sardonic wit. Her first volume of poetry, Enough Rope (1926), brought her fame, and she followed it with such volumes as Death and Taxes (1931) and Not So Deep as a Well (1936). Although decidedly light and often flippant, Parker's satiric verse is carefully crafted and stunningly concise. Her short stories satirizing aspects of modern life are witty, wry, and often poignant. "Big Blond" is probably her best-known story. Collections of stories include Laments for the Living (1930) and Here Lies (1939). Her Collected Stories was published in 1942 and her Collected Poetry in 1944. She collaborated with Arnaud d'Usseau on the play Ladies of the Corridor (1953).

See biographies by J. Keats (1970) and M. Meade (1987); study by A. F. Kinney (1978).

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

Dorothy Parker: Selected full-text books and articles

The Rhetoric of Rage: Women in Dorothy Parker By Sondra Melzer Peter Lang Publishing, 1997
Dorothy Parker: An American Centenary By Horder, Mervyn Contemporary Review, Vol. 263, No. 1535, December 1993
American Women Writers, 1900-1945: A Bio-Bibliographical Critical Sourcebook By Laurie Champion Greenwood Press, 2000
Librarian’s tip: "Dorothy Parker (1893-1967)" begins on p. 271
The Columbia Companion to the Twentieth-Century American Short Story By Blanche H. Gelfant; Lawrence Graver Columbia University Press, 2000
Librarian’s tip: "Dorothy Parker" begins on p. 447
American Women Fiction Writers, 1900-1960 By Harold Bloom Chelsea House, vol.2, 2000
Librarian’s tip: "Dorothy Parker (1893-1967)" begins on p. 147
Jewish Women Fiction Writers By Harold Bloom Chelsea House, 1998
Librarian’s tip: "Dorothy Parker" begins on p. 104
American Women Playwrights, 1900-1950 By Yvonne Shafer Peter Lang, 1997
Librarian’s tip: "Dorothy Parker (1893-1967)" begins on p. 421
Making Love Modern: The Intimate Public Worlds of New York's Literary Women By Nina Miller Oxford University Press, 1999
Librarian’s tip: Chap. Four "The Algonquin Round Table and the Politics of Sophistication"
A Library of Literary Criticism: Modern American Literature By Dorothy Nyren; Dorothy Nyren Frederick Ungar, 1960 (3rd edition)
Librarian’s tip: Discussion of Dorothy Parker begins on p. 372
I Hear America ...: Literature in the United States since 1900 By Vernon Loggins Biblo and Tannen, 1967
Librarian’s tip: "Dorothy Parker" begins on p. 299
Innocent Merriment: An Anthology of Light Verse By Franklin P. Adams Garden City Pub. Co., 1945
Librarian’s tip: Poems by Dorothy Parker begin on p. 160
The Comic in Theory & Practice By John J. Enck; Elizabeth T. Forter; Alvin Whitley Appleton-Century-Crofts, 1960
Librarian’s tip: "You Were Perfectly Fine" by Dorothy Parker begins on p. 141
America's 93 Greatest Living Authors Present This Is My Best: Over 150 Self-Chosen and Complete Masterpieces, Together with Their Reasons for Their Selections By Whit Burnett Dial Press, 1942
Librarian’s tip: "Dorothy Parker: Why She Selected 'The Standard of Living'" begins on p. 206
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