Name: Taylor, Peter
Born/Started: Jan. 08, 1917
Died/Ended: Nov. 02, 1994
Description: Peter Taylor was a writer of short stories who spent his youth in St. Louis. His father ran the Missouri State Life Insurance Company and while he lived here, Taylor attended Miss Rossman’s private school and Country Day School. In 1932, the Taylors had to move to Memphis, as a result of the financial crisis they encountered from the Crash of 1929. Taylor attended college at Columbia, Vanderbilt and Kenyon College, from which he graduated. He attended Louisiana State’s graduate program and there decided to become a fiction writer.
In 1940, Taylor was drafted into the army, serving until 1945. In 1943, before he was shipped to England, he married Eleanor Ross, a young North Carolina poet. After being discharged, he secured a teaching position at her alma mater, Woman´s College of the University of North Carolina, at Greensboro. He served as a teacher of writing at a variety of colleges and universities over the next 37 years. His work has appeared in the best literary magazines, including Southern Review, Kenyon Review, Sewanee Review, and Partisan Review.
In the decades following World War II, he was among those writers who established America´s ascendancy in the short story. In 1978, he received the Gold Medal from the American Academy and Institute of Arts and Letters. In 1985 he published his full-length novel, A Summons to Memphis, for which he was awarded Italy´s International Literary Prize Chianti Ruffino Antico Fattore, the Ritz/Hemingway Prize, and the Pulitzer Prize. In 1993, he published his eighth short story collection, and in 1994, though in failing health, he finished another novel, In the Tennessee Country.
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