William Saroyan

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Saroyan, William


Born Aug. 31, 1908, in Fresno, Calif. American writer.

Saroyan is the son of Armenian emigrants. He has lived in Europe since 1960. His first book was the short-story collection The Daring Young Man on the Flying Trapeze (1934), which was followed by Inhale and Exhale (1936), Little Children (1937), The Trouble With Tigers (1938), My Name Is Aram (1940), Rock Wagram (1951), and The Whole Voyald and Other Stories (1956). Saroyan’s plays were first staged in the late 1930’s. They include My Heart’s in the Highlands (1939), The Time of Your Life (1939, Pulitzer Prize), The Cave Dwellers (1939), and Get Away, Old Man (1944).

Saroyan has written the novels The Human Comedy (1943; Russian translation, 1958) and The Adventures of Wesley Jackson (1946; Russian translation, 1959) and various works depicting family and psychological conflicts among intellectuals, for example, Mama, I Love You (1956; Russian translation, 1970), Papa, You’re Crazy (1957; Russian translation, 1964), and Boys and Girls Together (1963).

Since the 1960’s, Saroyan has written mainly autobiographical sketches, essays, memoirs, and articles on current affairs, collected in Not Dying (1963), Days of Life and Death and Escape to the Moon (1970), and Places Where I’ve Done Time (1972).

Saroyan depicts the life of ordinary Americans, especially poor Armenians, among whom he spent his childhood and adolescence. He writes of his love for the common people in a kindly tone that borders on sentimentality. Saroyan’s works are characterized by the author’s distinctive sense of humor, vivid imagination, and colorful descriptions of everyday life.


The William Saroyan Reader. New York, 1958.
Letters From 74 Rue Taitbon. New York, 1968.
I Used to Believe I Had Forever, Now I’m Not So Sure. New York, 1969.
In Russian translation:
60 mil’ ν chas: Rasskazy. Moscow, 1958.
”Chto-to smeshnoe: Ser’eznaia povest’.” Literaturnaia Armeniia, 1963, nos. 5–8.
Put’vashei zhizni: P’esy. Moscow, 1966.


Orlova, R. “Dobryi uteshitel’.” In her Potomki Gekl’berri Finna. Moscow, 1964.
Gonchar, N. “Tochnosf detail i pravda obraza.” Literaturnaia Armeniia, 1973, no. 9.
Floan, H. R. William Saroyan. New York, 1966.


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The promising and, in the end, horrifying career of William Saroyan is a case study in the limits of raw talent.
During the main years of his musical work (1932-49) Bowles was esteemed as a composer for the theater, producing over thirty scores for the works of such playwrights as Orson Welles, Lillian Hellman, and William Saroyan.
Spec's, 12 William Saroyan Place (previously Adler Street); 421-4112.
Bell Auditorium Tue-23-Jun - Memphis, TN - Orpheum Theatre Wed-8-Jul - Winnipeg, MB - Centennial Concert Hall Fri-10-Jul - Regina, SK - Conexus Arts Centre Sat-11-Jul - Regina, SK - Conexus Arts Centre Mon-13-Jul - Saskatoon, SK - TCU Place Wed-15-Jul - Calgary, AB - Southern Alberta Jubilee Auditorium Sat-18-Jul - Vancouver, BC - Queen Elizabeth Theatre Sun-19-Jul - Seattle, WA - Benaroya Hall Tue-21-Jul - Portland, OR - Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall Thu-23-Jul - Fresno, CA - William Saroyan Theatre Sat-25-Jul - Oakland, CA - Oakland Paramount Theatre of the Arts Sun-26-Jul - Sacramento, CA - Sacramento Community Theatre Tue-28-Jul - Los Angeles, CA - Nokia Theatre L.
Even a cursory look at the lives of famous Armenians, such as William Saroyan and Arshile Gorky, who fled to this country after 1915 is enough to make one understand the price paid and the dignified struggle fought.
com)-- Odyssey Books is celebrating Stanford University Libraries' announcement of the shortlist for the fifth William Saroyan International Prize for Writing.
The books that were selected - titles such as Ernest Hemingway's "For Whom the Bell Tolls" and "The Human Comedy" by William Saroyan - had recently come out in the United States.
The Armenians claim William Saroyan and Cher, so we'll call that a draw.
It took William Saroyan, writer and fellow rebel (notorious for winning--and refusing--a Pulitzer Prize when Elvis was just a five-year-old in Tupelo, Miss.
A world premiere musical, "Tracy's Tiger" (opens March 31), based on the novella by William Saroyan with book and lyrics by Linda Alper, Douglas Langworthy and Penny Metropulos and music and additional lyrics by Sterling Tinsley.
And he was pals with much-better-known authors William Faulkner and William Saroyan, among others.
Originally published as Harlem as Seen by Hirschfeld by Hyperion Press in 1941, this handsome expanded edition features Hirschfeld's lively caricatures, prints, and drawings of Harlem's thriving nightlife and culture, as well as essays by William Saroyan, Zora Neale Thurston, and others.