Gay Talese born February 7 , in Ocean City, New Jersey is an American author who wrote for The New York Times in the early s and helped to define literary journalism or "new nonfiction reportage", also known as "New Journalism". His southern Italian father, Joseph Talese, was a tailor who had emigrated to the United States in and his mother, the former Catherine DePaolo, was a buyer for a Brooklyn department store. At school as a child, he wore hand crafted suits from his father's shop which, he later reflected in his memoir Origins of a Nonfiction Writer , caused him to appear to be older than his classmates. He recounted his early years in his book "Unto the Sons". Talese attended Ocean City High School.
History of American journalism
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American writer, often cited as one of the founders of the s "New Journalism," a label he resists. He was ostracized as a Catholic in a predominantly Methodist area, and as an Italian, since anyone who was Catholic was apt to be Irish. His father, Joseph, was a southern Italian tailor who came to America in , and his mother, Catherine DePaolo, was a buyer for a Brooklyn department store. Never an outstanding student in grade and high school, Talese was always a walking mannequin, reflecting his immigrant father's tailoring skills. His writing ability surfaced in high school.
Talese then explained that the problem with female journalists was they were limited by their desire to stay above the fray, according to an audience member who spoke to the Washington Post. It could be argued that Talese and Didion were contemporaries. Talese, 84, is widely considered one of the best journalists of his generation. He started his career in the s as a sportswriter for the New York Times, and eventually left the newspaper to write for Esquire magazine.
Bestselling author Gay Talese now gives us an important and compelling work: the epic of the millions who emigrated from Italy to America beginning at the turn of the century, told full-scale for the first time. The immigrant saga is brought close to us through the lives of the author's forebears, particularly his Italian-born father, Joseph, a tailor and assimilated American who during World War II existed as an "emotional double-agent" — swayed by his devotion to his brothers fighting in the Fascist army while at the same time aiding the Allied cause as a volunteer shore patrolman within the beachfront community of his adopted home in Ocean City, New Jersey. Joseph's tempered loyalty, felt as well by many fellow immigrants during Italy's unfriendly years with the Allies, brought him into conflict with his American-born son, who saw himself as an "alien" under his father's roof, an "outsider" on the flag-waving Protestant island of Ocean City — "olive-skinned in a freckle-face town.