Alexander Trocchi


Biography of Alexander Trocchi

Alexander Whitelaw Robertson Trocchi (30 July 1925 – 15 April 1984) was a Scottish novelist.

Trocchi was born in Glasgow to a Scottish mother and Italian father. After working as a seaman on the Murmansk convoys, he attended University of Glasgow. On graduation he obtained a traveling grant that enabled him to relocate to continental Europe. In the early 1950s, he lived in Paris and edited the literary magazine Merlin, which published Henry Miller, Samuel Beckett, Christopher Logue, and Pablo Neruda, amongst others. Although not published in Merlin, American writer Terry Southern, who lived in Paris from 1948−1952, became a close friend of both Trocchi and his colleague Richard Seaver, and the three later co-edited the anthology Writers In Revolt (1962). Though established somewhat in rivalry with the Paris Review, George Plimpton also had served on Merlin's editorial board. Trocchi claimed that this journal came to an end when the US State Department canceled its many subscriptions in protest over an article by Jean-Paul Sartre praising the homoeroticism of Jean Genet.

Maurice Girodias published most of Trocchi's novels through Olympia Press, often written under pen names, such as Frances Lengel and Carmencita de las Lunas.

Girodias also published My Life and Loves: Fifth Volume, which purported to be the final volume of the autobiography of Irish writer Frank Harris. However, though based on autobiographical material by Harris, the book was heavily edited and rewritten by Trocchi.

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