du Plessix Gray, Francine

du Plessix Gray, Francine, 1930–2019, French-American writer, b. Warsaw, studied Bryn Mawr, Black Mountain College, B.A. Barnard, 1952. She worked first as a writer and editor for radio and magazines, becoming in the 1960s a contributor to The New Yorker, The New York Review of Books, and other periodicals. Her first novel was the semiautobiographical Lovers and Tyrants (1976); other novels, which chronicle a privileged but often troubled social scene, include World without End (1981), a tale of a trip to Russia, and October Blood (1985), a tale of the fashion world. She wrote biographies of a number of French men and women, including the marquis de Sade (1998), Simone Weil (2001), and Mme de Staël (2008). Her other nonfiction includes a study of Hawaii (1972) and Them (2005), on her troubled life with her distinguished but difficult Russian-born mother and stepfather.

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