Edward Gorey’s Biographer at FPL!

Join us on Sunday, March 17th at 2:00 PM as we welcome Mark Dery, author of Born to Be Posthumous: the eccentric life and mysterious genius of Edward Gorey!

Critics never quite knew what to make of Edward Gorey (1925-2000), the author and illustrator whose darkly droll tales of murder, mayhem, and discreet depravity have influenced Tim Burton, Lemony Snicket, and Guillermo Del Toro, among others. His use of nonsense verse and the picture-book format, his mock-moralistic tone, and his densely crosshatched pen-and-ink style, reminiscent of 19th-century engravings, have led more than a few readers to mistake his books for Victorian children’s literature. Yet the camp-macabre wit and disquieting subject matter of titles like The Loathsome Couple (inspired by the true-crime exploits of a pair of child-killers) and The Gashlycrumb Tinies (an ABC book that reels off the deaths of 26 little dears in rhyming couplets) make it clear that Gorey’s books are the stuff of nursery nightmares. In this illustrated lecture, cultural critic Mark Dery, author of Born to Be Posthumous: The Eccentric Life and Mysterious Genius of Edward Gorey, reveals the surprisingly serious themes woven through his oeuvre: death, sexuality, the human condition, the meaning (or meaninglessness?) of life. As well, he explores the obscure influences—and Freudian shadows—haunting Gorey’s whimsically sinister body of work. 

Many thanks to Eight Cousins, Palmer House Inn, and the Trustees of the Falmouth Public Library for making this program possible! You can register for this program online.

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