Illinois State Library

Illinois Center for the Book

Individual Author Record

General Information

Name:  James Purdy  

Pen Name: None


Born: 1914 in Hicksville, OH

Died: 2009 in Englewood, NJ

-- James Purdy on WorldCat --

Illinois Connection

Purdy attended the University of Chicago.

Biographical and Professional Information

Born in Hicksville, Ohio, James Purdy was raised in Findlay, Ohio. His family moved there when he was about five years old. He attended Bowling Green State College (now Bowling Green State University), the University of Chicago and the University of Puebla in Mexico.While he was a gay man, Purdy consistently rejected identity politics and defining oneself according to one's sexuality.

Published Works

    On Glory's Course, Penguin, 198563: Dream Palace, Selected Stories, 1956-1987, Black Sparrow Press, 1991Eustace Chisholm and the Works, Carroll & Graf, 2005Color of Darkness: Eleven Stories and a Novella, Greenwood, 1975Narrow Rooms (Gay Modern Classics Series), LPC Group, 1985I Am Elijah Thrush (American Crisis), Gay Men's Press, 1985Moe's Villa and Other Stories, Carroll & Graf, 2004The Candles of Your Eyes, City Lights Publishers , 1991In a Shallow Grave, City Lights Publishers, 2001Garments the Living Wear , City Lights Publishers, 2001

Selected Titles At Your Library

On glory's course /
ISBN: 0140076298. OCLC Number:

Penguin Books,. New York :. 1985.

63, dream palace :
ISBN: 0876858442. OCLC Number:

Black Sparrow Press,. Santa Rosa :. 1991.

Eustace Chisholm and the works /
ISBN: 0786715022. OCLC Number:

. .

Depiction of the strange world of a small group of Americans in Chicago during the depression.

Color of darkness :
ISBN: 0837178746. OCLC Number:

Greenwood Press,. Westport, Conn. :. 1975, ©1957.

Narrow rooms /
ISBN: 0907040578. OCLC Number:

GMP,. London :. 1985.

"Released from a prison sentence for manslaughter, Sidney returns home to West Virginia, where, in order to exorcise the memory of the lover he killed, he must keep his appointment with destiny in the shape of the man known as "the Renderer." A shattering and powerful novel of sexual passion among four men in the remote Appalachians, and a journey into the dark night of the American soul."--Back cover.

I am Elijah Thrush /
ISBN: 0854490124. OCLC Number:

GMP,. London :. 1986, ©1972.

Moe's villa & other stories /
ISBN: 0786714174. OCLC Number:

Carroll & Graf,. New York :. 2004.

The author's first short story collection in ten years introduces twelve new stories, including one about an opera diva whose career is managed by her talking cat and another chronicling the bizarre journey of a man whose obsession with his unfaithful wife leads him into an even stranger obsession over a rare bird.

The candles of your eyes and thirteen other stories /
ISBN: 0872862569. OCLC Number:

City Lights,. San Francisco :. 1991.

In a shallow grave /
ISBN: 0872862348. OCLC Number:

City Lights Books ;. San Francisco :. 1988.

Garments the living wear /
ISBN: 0872862399. OCLC Number:

City Lights Books,. San Francisco :. 1989.


  • PEN/Faulkner Award ,
  • On Glory's Course