Mary McCarthy

McCarthy, Mary Therese

Mary Therese McCarthy, 1912–89, American writer, b. Seattle, grad. Vassar, 1933. As drama critic for the Partisan Review (1937–45), she gained a reputation for wit, intellect, and acerbity. Her novel The Oasis (1949) satirizes left-wing intellectuals, whereas The Group (1963) satirizes an entire generation. Her other novels include Cast a Cold Eye (1950), The Groves of Academe (1952), Birds of America (1971), and Cannibals and Missionaries (1979). Among her volumes of nonfiction are Venice Observed (1956), The Stones of Florence (1959), Vietnam (1967), The Mask of State: Watergate Portraits (1974), Ideas and the Novel (1980), and How I Grew (1987). A comprehensive collection of her literary, cultural, and political writings was posthumously published as A Bolt from the Blue and Other Essays (2002). She was married several times, from 1938–46 to the critic Edmund Wilson.

See her memoirs, Memories of a Catholic Girlhood (1957) and How I Grew (1985); her correspondence with Hannah Arendt (1995); biographies by C. Gelderman (1988) and F. Kiernan (2000); study by I. Stock (1968); Writing Dangerously: Mary McCarthy and Her World (1992) by C. Brightman.

The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright© 2015, The Columbia University Press.

Mary McCarthy: Selected full-text books and articles

Cast a Cold Eye By Mary McCarthy Harcourt Brace and Company, 1950
Theatre Chronicles, 1937-1962 By Mary McCarthy Noonday Press, 1963
Sights and Spectacles, 1937-1956 By Mary McCarthy Farrar, Straus and Cudahy, 1956
The Stones of Florence By Mary McCarthy; Evelyn Hofer Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, 1959
The Roosevelt Era By Milton Crane Boni and Gaer, 1947
Librarian’s tip: "Portrait of the Intellectual as a Yale Man" by Mary McCarthy begins on p. 253, excerpted from "The Company She Keeps"
Encounters: An Anthology from the First Ten Years of Encounter Magazine By Irving Kristol; Melvin Lasky J.; Stephen Spender Basic Books, 1963
Librarian’s tip: "My Confession" by Mary McCarthy begins on p. 34
Contemporary American Novelists By Harry T. Moore Southern Illinois University Press, 1964
Librarian’s tip: "The Dissections of Mary McCarthy" begins on p. 54
Telling Lies in Modern American Autobiography By Timothy Dow Adams University of North Carolina Press, 1990
Librarian’s tip: Chap. 5 "Mary McCarthy: I Do Believe Her Though I Know She Lies"
"All My Habits of Mind": Performance and Identity in the Novels of Mary McCarthy By Marsh, Kelly A Studies in the Novel, Vol. 34, No. 3, Fall 2002
Peer-reviewed publications on Questia are publications containing articles which were subject to evaluation for accuracy and substance by professional peers of the article's author(s).
William S. Burroughs at the Front: Critical Reception, 1959-1989 By Jennie Skerl; Robin Lydenberg Southern Illinois University Press, 1991
Librarian’s tip: Chap. 4 "Burroughs' Naked Lunch" by Mary McCarthy
American Women Fiction Writers, 1900-1960 By Harold Bloom Chelsea House, vol.2, 2000
Librarian’s tip: "Mary McCarthy 1912-1989 " begins on p. 55
Encyclopedia of the Essay By Tracy Chevalier Fitzroy Dearborn, 1997
Librarian’s tip: "McCarthy, Mary American, 1912-1989" begins on p. 507
Women Memoirists By Harold Bloom Chelsea House, vol.2, 1998
Librarian’s tip: "Mary McCarthy" begins on p. 52
The Columbia Companion to the Twentieth-Century American Short Story By Blanche H. Gelfant; Lawrence Graver Columbia University Press, 2000
Librarian’s tip: "Mary McCarthy (1912¿1989)" begins on p. 361
Catholic Women Writers: A Bio-Bibliographical Sourcebook By Mary R. Reichardt Greenwood Press, 2001
Librarian’s tip: "Mary McCarthy (1912¿1989)" begins on p. 235
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