Monday, October 11, 2010

Naked Came the Stranger

The book Naked Came the Stranger was a literary hoax perpetrated by a number of prominent journalists in 1969. The project was conceived by Mike McGrady of Newsday, who assembled twenty-four journalists to write a deliberately terrible book with a lot of sex, to illustrate the point that popular American literary culture had become mindlessly vulgar.  Writing under the pseudonym Penelope Ashe, the group wrote the book as a deliberately inconsistent and mediocre hodge-podge, with each chapter written by a different author. Some of the chapters had to be heavily edited, because they were originally too well written.  Fulfilling McGrady's cynical expectations, the book was wildly successful.

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