Lillian Hellman (1905-1984) was an American author. Her works include An Unfinished Woman (1969), Pentimento (1973), and Scoundrel Time (1976).
Life and Works
Hellman was born June 20, 1905, in New Orleans, Louisiana. She smoked, drank, got close to Dashiell Hammett, and worked as a prostitute before writing her first play, about a teaching killing herself after being accused of lesbianism, "The Children's Hour." She supported the Spanish Loyalists, McCarthyism, flappers, and Sigmund Freud. She wrote many short plays about malicious exploitation and reminisced about her communism and leftist causes in An Unfinished Woman, Pentimento, and Scoundrel Time. Culminating the proof of her bad taste, she made Voltaire's Candide into a musical.
She died June 30, 1984, in Martha's Vineyard.
- The New York Public Library Student's Desk Reference. Prentice Hall, New York: 1991.
- "Hellman, Lillian." Encyclopedia Britannica Online.