Frank Harris

(1856—1931) Irish writer

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edited the Evening News (1882–6), the Fortnightly Review (1886–94), and the Saturday Review (1894–8), in which he published, among others, G. B. Shaw (as dramatic critic), H. G. Wells, and Beerbohm, all of whom left vivid recollections of him. A scandalous reputation gathered round him, occasioned by his fight against Victorian prudery, by his decreasingly respectable role as editor (of such periodicals as The Candid Friend, Vanity Fair, and Hearth and Home), by his championship of Germany while in American during the First World War, and by his sexually boastful, explicit (and unreliable) memoirs, My Life and Loves (4 vols, 1922–7). His other publications include volumes of short stories, a novel (The Bomb, 1908, set in Chicago), two plays, one of them (Mr and Mrs Daventry, 1900, pub. 1956) based on a scenario by his friend Wilde, and lives of Shakespeare, Wilde (1916), and Shaw (1931). His The Man Shakespeare and His Tragic Life‐story (1909), though derided by scholars, had a considerable impact. His real achievements tend to be obscured by his persistent and self‐destructive self‐aggrandisement.

Subjects: Literature.

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