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GRACE PALEY, Photo: Skip Dickstein


State Author 1986 - 1988

" of the most admired, beloved, and exemplary writers of the American literary community..."
- Tom Smith, Associate Director, NYSWI, 1984-1994

"She was like a member of the family for all of us who knew her, a beloved aunt who set moral standards for her nephews and nieces, set them higher than their own parents ever could. Man, are we going to miss her!" - Russell Banks

Previous Visit:
New York State Writers Institute
Joint Reading with Robert Nichols, April 30, 2002
8:00 p.m. Reading | 3303 Sage Building, RPI, Troy

Grace Paley, the first recipient of the Edith Wharton Citation of Merit, was born in the Bronx in 1922. She is the author of three highly acclaimed collections of short fiction--The Little Disturbances of Man (1959), Enormous Changes at the Last Minute (1974), and Later the Same Day (1985)--as well as three collections of poetry, including Leaning Forward, also published in 1985. Ms. Paley has taught at Columbia and Syracuse Universities, and currently teaches at both City College of New York, where she is writer-in-residence, and Sarah Lawrence College, where she has taught creative writing and literature for 18 years. She received a Guggenheim fellowship in 1961, a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts in 1966, and an award from the National Institute of Arts and Letters in 1970. She is a member of the Executive Board of P.E.N.

Grace Paley and Gov. Mario CuomoActively involved in anti-war, feminist and anti-nuclear movements, Ms. Paley has been a member of the War Resisters' League, Resist, and Women's Pentagon Action, and was one of the founders of the Greenwich Village Peace Center in 1961; she regards herself as a "somewhat combative pacifist and cooperative anarchist." Ms. Paley has two children and one grandchild, and divides her time between New York City and Thetford Hill, Vermont.

In Spring 1987, Ms. Paley was awarded a Senior Fellowship by the National Endowment for the Arts, in recognition of her lifetime contribution to literature.

Books by Grace Paley:

Collections of Short Stories
THE LITTLE DISTURBANCES OF MAN. Garden City: Doubleday, 1959.
ENORMOUS CHANGES AT THE LAST MINUTE. New York: Farrar, Straus & Giroux, 1974.
LATER THE SAME DAY. New York: Farrar, Straus & Giroux, 1985.

Collections of Poetry
16 BROADSIDES. St. Paul: Bookslinger, 1980.
GOLDENROD. Penobscot: Granite Press, 1982.
LEANING FORWARD: POEMS. Penobscot: Granite Press, 1985.


THE WHITE NEGRO. San Francisco: City Lights, 1957.
THE ARMIES OF THE NIGHT. New York: New American Library, 1968.
MIAMI AND THE SIEGE OF CHICAGO. New York: New American Library, 1968.
OF A FIRE ON THE MOON. Boston: Little, Brown, 1970.
THE PRISONER OF SEX. Boston: Little, Brown, 1971.
THE FAITH OF GRAFFITI. New York: Praeger, 1974.
THE FIGHT. Boston: Little, Brown, 1975.
THE EXECUTIONER'S SONG. Boston: Little, Brown, 1979.
OSWALD'S TALE: AN AMERICAN MYSTERY. New York: Random House, 1996.
WHY ARE WE AT WAR?. New York: Random House, 2003.

MARILYN. New York: Grosset & Dunlap, 1973.


TO AGGRAVATE THE CONSCIENCE: GRACE PALEY'S LOUD VOICE by Rose Kamel. In Journal of Ethnic Studies, v. 11, #3, Fall 1983, p. 29 -49.

FAITH, GRACE, AND LOVE by Clara Claiborne Park. In The Hudson Review, v. 38 #3, Autumn 1985, p. 481-488.

GRACE PALEY by Adam J. Sorkin. In Twentieth-Century American-Jewish Writers. Dictionary of Literary Biography, v. 28, Gale Research Co., 1984, p. 225-231.

GRACE PALEY in Contemporary Authors. New Revised Series, v. 13, Gale Research Co., 1984, p. 397-401.

GRACE PALEY in Current Biography, v. 47, March 1986, p. 44-47.

GRACE PALEY: CHASTE COMPACTNESS by Ronald Scheifer. In Contemporary American Women Writers: Narrative Strategies, ed. by Catherine Rainwater and William J. Scheik. University Press of Kentucky, 1985, p. 31-49.

GRACE PALEY: FRAGMENTS FOR A PORTRAIT IN COLLAGE by Blanche H. Gelfant. In New England Review, v. 3, #2, Winter 1980, pp. 276293. (Reprinted in Women Writing in America by B. H. Gelfant. University Press of New England, 1984, p. 11-29.)

GRACE PALEY: THE SOCIOLOGY OF METAFICTION. In Literary Subversions by Jerome Klinkowitz. Southern Illinois University Press, 1985, p. 70-76.

GRACE PALEY: VOICE FROM THE VILLAGE by David Remnick. In Washington Post, April 14, 1985, Section C, p. 1, con't. p. 14.

MRS. HEGEL-SHTEIN'S TEARS by Marianne DeKoven. In Partisan Review, v. 48, #2, 1981, p. 217-223.

PACIFISTS WITH THEIR DUKES UP by Robert R. Harris. In The New York Times, Book Review Section (7), April 14, 1985, p. 7.

"WHAT ARE WE, ANIMALS?" GRACE PALEY'S WORLD OF TALK AND LAUGHTER by Adam J. Sorkin. In Studies in American Jewish Literature, v. 2, 1982, p. 144-154.

CLEARING HER THROAT: AN INTERVIEW WITH GRACE PALEY by Joan Lidoff. In Shenandoah, v. 32, #3, 1981, p. 3-26.

A CONVERSATION WITH GRACE PALEY ed. by Peter Marchant and Earl Ingersoll. In The Massachusetts Review, v. 26, #4, Winter 1985, p. 606-614.

GRACE PALEY by Ruth Perry. In Women Writers Talking ed. by Janet Todd. Holmes & Meier, 1983, p. 35-56.

Book Show Transcript

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