Paul Bowles

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Bowles, Paul,

1910–99, American writer and composer, b. New York City. He studied in Paris with Virgil ThomsonThomson, Virgil,
1896–1989, American composer, critic, and organist, b. Kansas City, Mo. Thomson studied in Paris with Nadia Boulanger. Until about 1926 he wrote in a dissonant, neoclassic style, but after his 16-minute quintet Sonata da chiesa
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 and Aaron CoplandCopland, Aaron
, 1900–1990, American composer, b. Brooklyn, N.Y. Copland was a pupil of Rubin Goldmark and of Nadia Boulanger, who introduced his work to the United States when she conducted his Symphony for Organ and Orchestra in 1925.
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 and composed (1930s–40s) a number of modernist operas, ballets, song cycles, and orchestral and chamber pieces. From 1947 on he lived in Tangier, Morocco. Strongly individualistic and written with an austere lack of sentimentality, his fiction is frequently set in the Arab world and often traces the corruption of innocence and the psychic disintegration of "civilized man" in a savagely primitive environment. His works include the short-story collections The Delicate Prey (1950), The Time of Friendship (1967), Collected Stories, 1939–1976 (1979), and Unwelcome Words (1988); and the novels The Sheltering Sky (1949), Up above the World (1966), and In the Red Room (1981). His 62 short stories were brought together in a 2001 collection. Bowles was also an accomplished travel writer, poet, and photographer.

Bibliography

See his autobiography, Without Stopping (1972); biographies by C. Sawyer-Laucanno (1989) and M. Dillon (1998); film biography, Let it Come Down (1999), by J. Baichwal; In Touch: The Letters of Paul Bowles (1994), ed. by J. Miller; Conversations with Paul Bowles (1993), ed. by G. D. Caponi; study by R. F. Patterson (1986); bibliography by J. Miller (1986).

His wife was Jane Auer Bowles, 1917–73, American writer, b. New York City. Original and idiosyncratic, her works often treat the conflict between the weak and the strong. They include the novel Two Serious Ladies (1943) and a play, In the Summer House (1954).

Bibliography

See her Collected Works (1978); biography by M. Dillon (1981); Out in the World: The Collected Letters of Jane Bowles (1985), ed. by M. Dillon.

Bowles, Paul (Frederick)

(1910–  ) writer, composer; born in New York City. Son of a dentist (whom he never forgave for working so hard on his teeth), he went to Paris in the late 1920s and had his poetry published in Transition. After studying with Aaron Copland and Virgil Thomson, he composed theater music, film scores, and opera in the 1930s–1940s. He married the writer Jane Bowles in 1938. His first novel, The Sheltering Sky (1949), dealt, like much of his subsequent fiction, with expatriate travelers in non-Western lands. Settling in Tangier, Morroco, in 1952, he collected and translated much Moroccan folklore while becoming something of a cult figure for the international literary set.
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