The ASL and Picador Professorship for Literature community mourns the passing of author and Picador alumnus Paul La Farge, who died on January 18. He was 52. During his time as Picador Guest Professor in the winter semester 2016/17, we have come to know Paul as an outstanding writer, educator, and a true mensch who has touched the lives and writing of countless people.
Paul La Farge has written five critically acclaimed novels and numerous essays and shorter works. After graduating from Yale University in 1992, his writing won him residencies at Yaddo, MacDowell, and the American Academy in Berlin as well as a Guggenheim Fellowship and a National Endowment for the Arts Literature Fellowship. He taught at Wesleyan, Columbia, and Leipzig before moving to Bennington College.
In his interview with aspeers, held during his time in Leipzig, Paul once joked that “I was this insufferable child who would write long mystery and fantasy stories and make my parents type them up. I would read them to people, and everybody was like: ‘Oh my God, just shut up with those stories! No one wants to hear your mystery story. It isn’t even a mystery, and we don’t get it.’ But I was really into it.” -- How lucky for those of us remaining that he was.
For more impressions on Paul's life and work, please click here.
To read the NYT's obituary for Paul, please click here.