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Publisher's Summary

When Memoirs was first published in 1975, it created quite a bit of turbulence in the media - though long self-identified as a gay man, Williams' candor about his love life, sexual encounters, and drug use was found shocking in and of itself, and such revelations by America's greatest living playwright were called "a raw display of private life" by the New York Times Book Review. As it turns out, Williams' look back at his life is not quite so scandalous as it once seemed; he recalls his childhood in Mississippi and St. Louis, his prolonged struggle as a "starving artist", the "overnight" success of The Glass Menagerie in 1945, the death of his long-time companion Frank Merlo in 1962, and his confinement to a psychiatric ward in 1969 and subsequent recovery from alcohol and drug addiction, all with the same directness, compassion, and insight that epitomize his plays.  

And, of course, Memoirs is filled with Williams' amazing friends from the worlds of stage, screen, and literature as he often hilariously, sometimes fondly - sometimes not - remembers them: Laurette Taylor, Gore Vidal, Truman Capote, Elia Kazan, Marlon Brando, Vivian Leigh, Carson McCullers, Anna Magnani, Greta Garbo, Elizabeth Taylor, and Tallulah Bankhead, to name a few.  

Contains mature themes.

©1972, 1975 The University of the South (P)2019 Tantor

What listeners say about Memoirs

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Informative and fun

Not only is Memoirs a witty and delightful recounting of Tennessee Williams' life, but it also provides a glimpse into what it was like for a gay man to come to terms with his sexuality in the thirties and forties when homosexuality was criminal and classified as a mental illness. Williams didn't hold back.

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Fabulous Narration Carried The Book

Although I am no fan of Williams plays, his memoir was witty and somewhat interesting.

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Insanely entertaining, informative.

I can't say how much I loved this memoir. First, with Tennessee Williams, you've already got great fodder. But, this is his writing at his best and about HIM. The narrator was so great, deadpan, you might have thought it was Tennessee himself. I was laughing out loud so many times. But, it also was moving and had some sadness with this great talent and some demons that haunted him through life. He seemed to always come out on the other side with the same wit and sarcasm and observations of people. Highly recommend.