Telling Lies in Modern American Autobiography
Timothy Dow Adams
Adams focuses on five modern American writers whose autobiographies are particularly complex because of apparent lies that permeate them. In examining their stories, Adams shows that lying in autobiography, especially literary autobiography, is not simply inevitable. Rather it is often a deliberate, highly strategic decision on the author's part.
Throughout his analysis, Adams's standard is not literal accuracy but personal authenticity. He attempts to resolve some of the paradoxes of recent autobiographical theory by looking at the classic question of design and truth in autobiography from the underside -- with a focus on lying rather than truth.
Originally published in 1990.
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