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Finding AidPrepared for the Web by Barbara Bass, March 11, 2002
Alfred Chester (1928-1971) was, in his time, a lesser-known author of short fiction; he was better known as a critical columnist in Book Week. A gifted young man from humble circumstances, he was not well understood by his family and was regarded as somewhat eccentric and self-destructive. His characters, often depicted as insistent upon ignoring the disappointments of reality, may have been influenced by his own experience with a childhood disease that caused him to lose all of his body hair. He is also remembered for exalting the homosexual in literature long before gay liberation made this acceptable. Chester spent many years abroad, chiefly in France and Morocco, before returning to New York in the 1960s. Some of his best-remembered books include Here Be Dragons (1955), Jamie Is My Heart's Desire (1956) and Behold Goliath (1964).
Scope and Content
Chester's collection includes correspondence to Norman Glass and Larry Moskowitz. Other correspondence relating to Chester can be found in James Broughton papers I and the Jean-Claude van Itallie papers.
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