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Benjamin Taylor Papers

Identifier: MS-MS-ms113

The Benjamin Taylor Papers includes correspondence with many American and European authors, as well as the manuscript version of his novel, Tales Out of School (1995) and his major work of nonfiction, Into the Open: Reflections on Genius and Modernity (1995). Also included is material towards the essay: “The Question of Jewishness and the Question of Writing: A Conversation with Edmond Jabès.”


  • Creation: 1977-1995


Conditions Governing Access


Conditions Governing Use

Users of the collection must read and agree to abide by the rules and procedures set forth in the Materials Use Policies.

Providing access to materials does not constitute permission to publish or otherwise authorize use. All publication not covered by fair use or other exceptions is restricted to those who have permission of the copyright holder, which may or may not be Washington University.

If you wish to publish or license Special Collections materials, please contact Special Collections to inquire about copyright status at (314) 935-5495 or (Publish means quotation in whole or in part in seminar or term papers, theses or dissertations, journal articles, monographs, books, digital forms, photographs, images, dramatic presentations, transcriptions, or any other form prepared for a limited or general public.)


2.00 Boxes

Biographical or Historical Information

Benjamin Taylor (1952 - ) is an American writer. Born in Fort Worth, Texas, Taylor received his bachelor of arts from Haverford College and his Ph.D. in English and comparative literature from Columbia University.  He is a founding member of the Graduate Writing Program faculty of The New School in New York City, and has also taught at Washington University in St. Louis, the Poetry Center of the 92nd Street Y, Bennington College and Columbia University. He has served as Secretary of the Board of Trustees of PEN American Center, has been a fellow of the MacDowell Colony and was awarded the Iphigene Ochs Sulzberger Residency at Yaddo. A Trustee of the Edward F. Albee Foundation, Inc., he is also a Fellow of the New York Institute for the Humanities at New York University and a Guggenheim Fellow for 2012 - 2013.

Taylor's debut novel, Tales Out of School (1995) won the 1996 Harold J. Ribalow. Taylor's second novel, The Book of Getting Even (2008) was one of three 2009 Barnes & Noble Discover Award winners, a 2008 Los Angeles Times Favorite Book of the Year, and a Ferro-Grumley Prize Finalist. In addition to his fiction, Taylor has published a book-length essay titled Into the Open: Reflections on Genius and Modernity (1995). He has also edited Saul Bellow: Letters (2010), and produced a travel memoir, Naples Declared: A Walk Around the Bay (2012). Taylor’s work has appeared in a number of publications including Harper's, Esquire, Bookforum, BOMB, the Los Angeles Times, Le Monde, The Georgia Review, Raritan Quarterly Review, Threepenny Review, Salmagundi, Provincetown Arts and The Reading Room.


Benjamin Taylor Papers
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Revision Statements

  • 2020 November 5: Resource record updated in ArchiveSpace by Sarah Schnuriger.

Collecting Area Details

Part of the Manuscripts Collecting Area

Joel Minor
Olin Library, 1 Brookings Drive
MSC 1061-141-B
St. Louis MO 63130 US
(314) 935-5495