• Controversial Author Henry V. Miller Writes to Publisher

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    HENRY V. MILLER (1891-1980) was an American author born in New York City, who sought to reestablish the freedom to live without the conventional restraints of civilization. His books are potpourris of sexual description, philosophical speculation, reflection on literature and society, surrealistic imaginings and autobiographical incident. After living in Paris in the 1930s, he returned to the United States and settled in Big Sur, CA. Miller’s first two works, Tropic of Cancer and Tropic of Capricorn, were denied publication in the U.S. because of their alleged obscenity and had to be smuggled in. The eventual publication of Tropic of Cancer in the U.S. led to a series of trials that tested American laws on obscenity. The U.S. Supreme Court, in Grove Press, Inc. v. Gerstein overruled the state court findings of obscenity and declared the book a work of literature. This was one of the notable events in the sexual revolution. ALS, Aug. 17, 1966, to publisher Richard Wentworth about the soon to be published book by W.A. Gordon, The Mind and Art of Henry Miller.


    “I started reading Prof. Gordon’s MS. last night. Can only read from ½ to 1 hour, at night, as eyes bother me now. Read some 50 odd pages, made notes, and will begin explaining notes probably today. A big job, as there are many errors, mis-statements, etc. “Regarding Durrell. He has asked me never to give his home address to any one. But you can write him care of his British or American publisher. Frankly, I know it’s useless to approach him about writing Foreward. He’s fed up with these requests, as I am. As for photos, I have all that are any good. Would you take the one I select? Let me know, please. “Sincerely, Henry Miller”


    Folds, staple mark away from the writing, else excellent.


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