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Biography of Dorothy Parker

Dorothy Parker

Dorothy Parker (1893 - 1967)

Dorothy Parker was one of the most successful and influential women writers of her era. Dorothy Rothschild was born on August 22, 1893 in West End, N.J. Her mother was Scottish and her father Jewish. She was "a late unexpected arrival in a loveless family". At the age of four her mother died. Her father remarried and Dorothy's home life was strained and distant at best. She was educated in private schools in N.J. and N.Y.C. Dorothy suffered two tragedies as a young woman. Her brother Henry died aboard the Titanic and a yearlater her father passed away. Dorothy moved to New York City in 1911 where she lived in a boarding house and worked as a piano player at a dance school. At the age of 21 she began submitting her writing to various magazines and papers. Her poem "Any Porch" was accepted and published by Vanity Fair. A few months later she was hired by Vogue, a sister publication of Vanity Fair. While working at Vogue her submissions to Vanity Fair continued to be published. After two years of working at Vogue she was transferred to Vanity Fair. In 1917 she married Edwin Parker, a stock broker. The marriage only lasted a brief time, but now she was Mrs. Dorothy Parker. At Vanity Fair she became New York's only female drama critic at the time. In the spring of 1919 she was invited to the Algonquin Hotel because of her connections at Vanity Fair and her reputation as a drama critic. This was the beginning of the famous Algonquin Round Table, an renowned intellectual literary circle.Dorothy was the only female founding member. It brought together such writers as Robert Benchley, Robert Sherwood, James Thurber, George Kaufman and many others. Dorothy was still writing for Vanity Fair but her reviews were becoming increasingly sarcastic and unfavorable. She was fired from the magazine in 1921. To earn money she began writing subtitles for a movie by D.W. Griffith.

Dorothy soon found another job at the magazine Ainslee's where she could be as sarcastic, bitchy, and witty as she pleased. In 1922 she wrote her first short story - "Such a PrettyLittle Picture" - this was the beginning of her literary career. In January of 1924 Dorothy divorced and moved into the Algonquin Hotel. She began writing plays; "Close Harmony" was her first. The first issue of The New Yorker was published in early 1925 and Dorothy contributed drama reviews and poetry for the first few issues. In February of 1926 she set off for Paris, but continued contributing articles to the New Yorker and Life. While in France she befriended Earnest Hemingway; surprisingly, considering his male chauvinist attitudes. Dorothy returned to New York in November. Her first book of poetry, "Enough Rope", was published and received favorable reviews as well ad being a commercial success. In 1927 she became very involved in the Sacco and Vanzetti trial. She traveled to Boston to join the protests against the execution of two innocent men. During the protest she was arrested but refused to travel in the paddy wagon, insisting on walking to jail. She was a committed socialist from this day until her death.

In October Dorothy became the book reviewer for the The New Yorker Magazine, under the title "The Constant Reader". In February of 1929 Dorothy's short story "The Big Blonde" was published and she won the prestigious O. Henry award for the best short story of the year. That same year Dorothy began doing screen writing in Hollywood. She moved to Hollywoodbecause she needed the money and was offered a contract by MGM. Dorothy wrote many screenplays over the next decade. In 1933 she once again traveled to Europe where she met her second husband Alan Campbell. He was also of Scottish-Jewish descent, and a rumored bisexual. They became screen writing partners and signed a contract with Paramount Pictures in 1935. In 1936 she helped found the Anti Nazi League. In 1937 Dorothy won an academy award for her joint screenplay of "A Star is Born".

Throughout the 1940's Dorothy continued writing prose and short stories along with screenplays. She was widely published in many magazines and Viking released an anthology of her short stories and prose. In 1949 she divorced Alan Campbell, but later they remarried.

In the 1950's she was called before the House on un-American Activities and pleaded the first instead of the fifth, still refusing to name any names. In 1952-1953 testimonywas given against her before the HUAC. From 1957-1963 she worked as a book reviewer for Esquire magazine. In 1959 she was inducted into American Academy of Arts and Letters. She was a distinguished Visiting Professor of English at California State College in L.A. In 1964 she published her final magazine piece in November's issue of Esquire.

On June 7, 1967, she was found dead of a heart attack in her room at Hotel Volney in New York City. She bequeathed her entire literary estate to the NAACP.



189 Poems written by Dorothy Parker

The poems are by default sorted according to volume, but you can also choose to sort them alphabetically or by page views.

Volume | Alphabetically | [Page Views] | Comments | First Lines


Page ViewsPoemComments
24711 Resume Comments and analysis of Resume by Dorothy Parker 315 Comments
18195 Unfortunate Coincidence Comments and analysis of Unfortunate Coincidence by Dorothy Parker 55 Comments
17275 "Star Light, Star Bright-" Comments and analysis of 54 Comments
16060 My Own Comments and analysis of My Own by Dorothy Parker 15 Comments
15893 The False Friends Comments and analysis of The False Friends by Dorothy Parker 82 Comments
15870 Godmother Comments and analysis of Godmother by Dorothy Parker 1 Comment
15625 Little Words Comments and analysis of Little Words by Dorothy Parker 10 Comments
15182 The Danger of Writing Defiant Verse Comments and analysis of The Danger of Writing Defiant Verse by Dorothy Parker 34 Comments
13330 For a Favorite Granddaughter
12744 Fighting Words
12591 Penelope Comments and analysis of Penelope by Dorothy Parker 263 Comments
11846 Sanctuary Comments and analysis of Sanctuary by Dorothy Parker 26 Comments
11785 The Choice Comments and analysis of The Choice by Dorothy Parker 51 Comments
11660 Autumn Valentine Comments and analysis of Autumn Valentine by Dorothy Parker 40 Comments
11508 Epitaph Comments and analysis of Epitaph by Dorothy Parker 221 Comments
11507 Purposely Ungrammatical Love Song Comments and analysis of Purposely Ungrammatical Love Song by Dorothy Parker 228 Comments
11375 Rhyme Against Living Comments and analysis of Rhyme Against Living by Dorothy Parker 7 Comments
11263 Sweet Violets Comments and analysis of Sweet Violets by Dorothy Parker 9 Comments
11021 A Very Short Song Comments and analysis of A Very Short Song by Dorothy Parker 299 Comments
11000 The Dark Girl's Rhyme Comments and analysis of The Dark Girl's Rhyme by Dorothy Parker 44 Comments
10892 The Little Old Lady in Lavender Silk
10763 Love Song Comments and analysis of Love Song by Dorothy Parker 48 Comments
10694 The Satin Dress Comments and analysis of The Satin Dress by Dorothy Parker 44 Comments
10650 Indian Summer Comments and analysis of Indian Summer by Dorothy Parker 44 Comments
10616 A Dream Lies Dead
10524 The Sea Comments and analysis of The Sea by Dorothy Parker 28 Comments
10473 The Apple Tree
10421 The Red Dress Comments and analysis of The Red Dress by Dorothy Parker 4 Comments
10209 Midnight Comments and analysis of Midnight by Dorothy Parker 21 Comments
9942 Lines on Reading Too Many Poets Comments and analysis of Lines on Reading Too Many Poets by Dorothy Parker 21 Comments
9940 The Trusting Heart Comments and analysis of The Trusting Heart by Dorothy Parker 3 Comments
9572 A Certain Lady
9081 Summary Comments and analysis of Summary by Dorothy Parker 14 Comments
9060 Of a Woman, Dead Young
8935 Symptom Recital Comments and analysis of Symptom Recital by Dorothy Parker 2 Comments
8874 Rainy Night Comments and analysis of Rainy Night by Dorothy Parker 14 Comments
8783 Faute de Mieux Comments and analysis of Faute de Mieux by Dorothy Parker 30 Comments
8735 Sonnet on an Alpine Night Comments and analysis of Sonnet on an Alpine Night by Dorothy Parker 2 Comments
8723 The Last Question Comments and analysis of The Last Question by Dorothy Parker 238 Comments
8463 From a Letter from Lesbia
8444 Ballade of Unfortunate Mammals Comments and analysis of Ballade of Unfortunate Mammals by Dorothy Parker 1 Comment
8431 Inscription for the Ceiling of a Bedroom Comments and analysis of Inscription for the Ceiling of a Bedroom by Dorothy Parker 40 Comments
8262 Guinevere at Her Fireside Comments and analysis of Guinevere at Her Fireside by Dorothy Parker 210 Comments
8125 Ornithology for Beginners Comments and analysis of Ornithology for Beginners by Dorothy Parker 8 Comments
7794 Somebody's Song Comments and analysis of Somebody's Song by Dorothy Parker 15 Comments
7742 Prisoner
7720 The Small Hours Comments and analysis of The Small Hours by Dorothy Parker 11 Comments
7601 Post-Graduate Comments and analysis of Post-Graduate by Dorothy Parker 4 Comments
7506 Sonnet for the End of a Sequence Comments and analysis of Sonnet for the End of a Sequence by Dorothy Parker 6 Comments
7502 But Not Forgotten Comments and analysis of But Not Forgotten by Dorothy Parker 12 Comments
7451 The New Love Comments and analysis of The New Love by Dorothy Parker 1 Comment
7424 August Comments and analysis of August by Dorothy Parker 9 Comments
7360 For a Sad Lady
7188 The Willow
7073 Ballade of a Talked-off Ear
7046 Epitaph for a Darling Lady
6970 Ninon de Lenclos, on Her Last Birthday Comments and analysis of Ninon de Lenclos, on Her Last Birthday by Dorothy Parker 3 Comments
6886 Philosophy Comments and analysis of Philosophy by Dorothy Parker 2 Comments
6805 Garden-Spot
6651 On Cheating the Fiddler Comments and analysis of On Cheating the Fiddler by Dorothy Parker 14 Comments
6612 Autobiography
6573 Braggart
6571 De Profundis Comments and analysis of De Profundis by Dorothy Parker 13 Comments
6545 Chant for Dark Hours Comments and analysis of Chant for Dark Hours by Dorothy Parker 1 Comment
6544 Ballade at Thirty-Five Comments and analysis of Ballade at Thirty-Five by Dorothy Parker 31 Comments
6403 Observation Comments and analysis of Observation by Dorothy Parker 439 Comments
6401 A Portrait
6356 Bric-a-Brac Comments and analysis of Bric-a-Brac by Dorothy Parker 11 Comments
6292 Paths Comments and analysis of Paths by Dorothy Parker 203 Comments
6262 Song of Perfect Propriety
6253 Oscar Wilde Comments and analysis of Oscar Wilde by Dorothy Parker 3 Comments
6251 Experience Comments and analysis of Experience by Dorothy Parker 13 Comments
6044 Fulfillment
6037 The Maid-Servant at the Inn Comments and analysis of The Maid-Servant at the Inn by Dorothy Parker 19 Comments
6031 Godspeed Comments and analysis of Godspeed by Dorothy Parker 1 Comment
6010 Ballade of a Great Weariness
5991 Afternoon Comments and analysis of Afternoon by Dorothy Parker 20 Comments
5980 Interview Comments and analysis of Interview by Dorothy Parker 18 Comments
5927 News Item Comments and analysis of News Item by Dorothy Parker 19 Comments
5883 Incurable Comments and analysis of Incurable by Dorothy Parker 9 Comments
5817 The White Lady
5762 Portrait of the Artist Comments and analysis of Portrait of the Artist by Dorothy Parker 2 Comments
5757 Anecdote Comments and analysis of Anecdote by Dorothy Parker 7 Comments
5748 Healed Comments and analysis of Healed by Dorothy Parker 21 Comments
5687 Alfred, Lord Tennyson Comments and analysis of Alfred, Lord Tennyson by Dorothy Parker 4 Comments
5676 Now at Liberty Comments and analysis of Now at Liberty by Dorothy Parker 15 Comments
5666 Theory
5651 The Leal Comments and analysis of The Leal by Dorothy Parker 9 Comments
5650 They Part Comments and analysis of They Part by Dorothy Parker 11 Comments
5649 Landscape Comments and analysis of Landscape by Dorothy Parker 1 Comment
5620 Neither Bloody nor Bowed Comments and analysis of Neither Bloody nor Bowed by Dorothy Parker 9 Comments
5555 Two-Volume Novel Comments and analysis of Two-Volume Novel by Dorothy Parker 11 Comments
5486 Temps Perdu Comments and analysis of Temps Perdu by Dorothy Parker 1 Comment
5371 Plea
5340 Requiescat Comments and analysis of Requiescat by Dorothy Parker 14 Comments
5287 Wail
5276 Liebestod
5251 Fable
5207 Walter Savage Landor Comments and analysis of Walter Savage Landor by Dorothy Parker 2 Comments
5168 Convalescent Comments and analysis of Convalescent by Dorothy Parker 15 Comments
5108 The Searched Soul Comments and analysis of The Searched Soul by Dorothy Parker 1 Comment
5081 Pictures in the Smoke
5031 Victoria Comments and analysis of Victoria by Dorothy Parker 1 Comment
4987 Story
4978 For a Lady Who Must Write Verse
4976 Rondeau Redouble Comments and analysis of Rondeau Redouble by Dorothy Parker 2 Comments
4965 The Second Oldest Story
4935 Testament
4905 Recurrence
4737 The Dramatists
4695 Prologue to a Saga
4682 The Homebody Comments and analysis of The Homebody by Dorothy Parker 5 Comments
4669 D. G. Rossetti
4635 The Thin Edge
4615 Roundel
4577 Pattern
4565 The Immortals
4480 George Sand
4421 Pour Prendre Conge
4254 Alexandre Dumas and His Son Comments and analysis of Alexandre Dumas and His Son by Dorothy Parker 9 Comments
4247 Harriet Beecher Stowe
4181 Thomas Carlyle
4044 To Newcastle
3932 Story of Mrs. W-
1957 General Review of the Sex Situation Comments and analysis of General Review of the Sex Situation by Dorothy Parker 702 Comments
1323 Prayer for a Prayer Comments and analysis of Prayer for a Prayer by Dorothy Parker 38 Comments
1016 Frustration Comments and analysis of Frustration by Dorothy Parker 246 Comments
955 Distance Comments and analysis of Distance by Dorothy Parker 7 Comments
945 Verse for a Certain Dog Comments and analysis of Verse for a Certain Dog by Dorothy Parker 41 Comments
928 The Evening Primrose Comments and analysis of The Evening Primrose by Dorothy Parker 2 Comments
919 Lullaby Comments and analysis of Lullaby by Dorothy Parker 42 Comments
908 Prayer for a New Mother Comments and analysis of Prayer for a New Mother by Dorothy Parker 1 Comment
867 Coda Comments and analysis of Coda by Dorothy Parker 235 Comments
858 Comment Comments and analysis of Comment by Dorothy Parker 20 Comments
850 Dilemma Comments and analysis of Dilemma by Dorothy Parker 253 Comments
815 Thought for a Sunshiny Morning
780 Social Note
766 Transition
723 Hearthside
653 Surprise Comments and analysis of Surprise by Dorothy Parker 20 Comments
639 The Gentlest Lady Comments and analysis of The Gentlest Lady by Dorothy Parker 5 Comments
623 For an Unknown Lady
615 I Know I Have Been Happiest Comments and analysis of I Know I Have Been Happiest by Dorothy Parker 22 Comments
611 Vers Demode
600 Wisdom Comments and analysis of Wisdom by Dorothy Parker 4 Comments
595 I Shall Come Back Comments and analysis of I Shall Come Back by Dorothy Parker 214 Comments
592 Reuben's Children Comments and analysis of Reuben's Children by Dorothy Parker 8 Comments
571 Daylight Saving Comments and analysis of Daylight Saving by Dorothy Parker 1 Comment
527 Men Comments and analysis of Men by Dorothy Parker 243 Comments
517 The Flaw in Paganism Comments and analysis of The Flaw in Paganism by Dorothy Parker 5 Comments
510 There Was One Comments and analysis of There Was One by Dorothy Parker 11 Comments
509 The Burned Child
507 Fair Weather
498 Words of Comfort to Be Scratched on a Mirror
473 The Trifler Comments and analysis of The Trifler by Dorothy Parker 1 Comment
471 Threnody Comments and analysis of Threnody by Dorothy Parker 258 Comments
465 Ultimatum Comments and analysis of Ultimatum by Dorothy Parker 16 Comments
403 Second Love
390 The Veteran Comments and analysis of The Veteran by Dorothy Parker 5 Comments
367 To a Much Too Unfortunate Lady Comments and analysis of To a Much Too Unfortunate Lady by Dorothy Parker 16 Comments
356 A Well-Worn Story
354 Partial Comfort Comments and analysis of Partial Comfort by Dorothy Parker 13 Comments
354 Song of One of the Girls
350 Superfluous Advice Comments and analysis of Superfluous Advice by Dorothy Parker 7 Comments
344 Condolence Comments and analysis of Condolence by Dorothy Parker 19 Comments
335 Tombstones in the Starlight Comments and analysis of Tombstones in the Starlight by Dorothy Parker 1 Comment
326 A Fairly Sad Tale
317 After Spanish Proverb Comments and analysis of After Spanish Proverb by Dorothy Parker 14 Comments
283 Salome's Dancing-Lesson
274 Renunciation
260 Parable for a Certain Virgin Comments and analysis of Parable for a Certain Virgin by Dorothy Parker 29 Comments
257 Sight
241 A Pig's-Eye View of Literature
240 The Lady's Reward Comments and analysis of The Lady's Reward by Dorothy Parker 48 Comments
233 Bohemia
231 Nocturne
215 Iseult of Brittany
185 Prophetic Soul
177 One Perfect Rose Comments and analysis of One Perfect Rose by Dorothy Parker 335 Comments
167 Solace Comments and analysis of Solace by Dorothy Parker 29 Comments
160 Charles Dickens Comments and analysis of Charles Dickens by Dorothy Parker 15 Comments
156 Mortal Enemy Comments and analysis of Mortal Enemy by Dorothy Parker 17 Comments
135 On Being a Woman Comments and analysis of On Being a Woman by Dorothy Parker 33 Comments
122 Inventory Comments and analysis of Inventory by Dorothy Parker 16 Comments
105 George Gissing Comments and analysis of George Gissing by Dorothy Parker 8 Comments
102 Light of Love Comments and analysis of Light of Love by Dorothy Parker 26 Comments
82 Cherry White Comments and analysis of Cherry White by Dorothy Parker 9 Comments
61 Interior Comments and analysis of Interior by Dorothy Parker 13 Comments
30 The Whistling Girl Comments and analysis of The Whistling Girl by Dorothy Parker 1 Comment


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