Cover image for Famous last words : apt observations, pleas, curses, benedictions, sour notes, bon mots, and insights from people on the brink of departure
Famous last words : apt observations, pleas, curses, benedictions, sour notes, bon mots, and insights from people on the brink of departure
Bisbort, Alan, 1953-
Publication Information:
San Francisco, Calif. : Pomegranate, [2001]

Physical Description:
vi, 154 pages : illustrations ; 21 cm
Subject Term:
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PN6328.L3 F365 2001 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks

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Whether Inspiring, Incomprehensible, insightful, bleak, or absurd, last words can be spoken by the living as well as the dying. Among the dying, last words are truly final, as was the case with Dylan Thomas, who uttered "I've just had eighteen straight whiskeys. I think that's the record." Famous Last Words records the parting shots of dozens of folks no longer with us, from those dead for political reasons to those who themselves decided to end it all. And it records the words of those who went on with their lives after uttering a memorable farewell but whose reputation was made by their words, often to their lasting frustration, such as the infamous Richard Milhous Nixon: "You won't have me to kick around anymore, because, gentlemen, this is my last press conference."Famous Last Words also preserves the last words of those inhabiting the world of fiction, whether in a book, on the stage, in a movie or on TV. Blanche DuBois's "I have always depended on the kindness of strangers" ranks right alongside Charles Foster Kane's "Rosebud" and Sidney Carton's "It is a far, far better thing that I do, than I have ever done. . . ." The mutt

Author Notes

Alan Bishort is a successful and prolific writer, editor, and researcher who has worked for the Library of Congress for almost twenty-five years

Table of Contents

Introductionp. v
1 On the Deathbedp. 1
Gertrude Stein
John Adams
Brendan Behan
Lucius Cornelius Sulla
Siddhartha Gautama Buddha
Emily Dickinson
Henry David Thoreau
Tuekaka (Old Joseph)
Leo Tolstoy
Phineas Taylor (P. T.) Barnum
James Joyce
Thomas Wolfe
James Michael Curley
Eugene O'Neill
Timothy Leary
Edith Piaf
Tycho Brahe
Dylan Thomas
Rod Serling
Robert E. Lee
O. Henry
Neal Cassady
Lord Byron
John Reed
Alexander Pushkin
William Morris
Marcus Aurelius
Eva Maria (Evita) Duarte de Peron
Ulysses S. Grant
George Gipp
2 On the Gallows/On the Firing Linep. 33
Jesus of Nazareth
Julius Caesar
Gary Mark Gilmore
Lee Harvey Oswald
Ernesto (Che) Guevara
Mata Hari
Nathan Hale
Joe Hill
Akiba ben Joseph
Edith Louisa Cavell
George-Jacques Danton
John Huss
Jerome of Prague
Thomas a Beckett
Anne Boleyn
Thomas More
Marie Antoinette
Jeanne-Manon Roland
Richard Eugene Hickock
John Brown
Roger Casement
Nicola Sacco
Vidkun Abraham Lauritz Quisling
John Wilkes Booth
Walter Raleigh
August Spies, Adolph Fischer, George Engel, Albert Parsons
Dutch Schultz
3 On the Jobp. 63
James (Jimmy) Riddle Hoffa
Robert F. Kennedy
Martin Luther King Jr.
Malcolm X
Alexander Hamilton
Richard Milhous Nixon
Neville Chamberlain
Dennis Rodman
Galileo Galilei
Robert Bellarmine
Edward VIII
Henry Louis (Lou) Gehrig
Douglas MacArthur
Huey Pierce Long, aka "Kingfish"
Amelia Earhart
4 On the Field of Battlep. 79
George Armstrong Custer
John B. Sedgwick
Napoleon Bonaparte
Mohammad Reza Shah Pahlavi
Thomas Jonathan (Stonewall) Jackson
Franz Ferdinand
The Sphinx
Lewis Armistead
Horatio Nelson
James Lawrence
5 On Stagep. 91
Richard III
Hedda Gabler
Blanche DuBois
Isadora Duncan
Johnny Rotten
Peter Townshend
William Claude (W. C.) Fields
Josephine Baker
Estragon and Vladimir
6 On the Screenp. 105
Rick (Casablanca)
Charles Foster Kane (Citizen Kane)
Colonel Nicholson (The Bridge on the River Kwai)
Wicked Witch of the West (The Wizard of Oz)
Harry Harbord (Breaker) Morant (Breaker Morant)
General Jack D. Ripper (Dr. Strangelove, or How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb)
Henry Wiggin (Bang the Drum Slowly)
Marguerite Gautier (Camille)
Tony and Maria (West Side Story)
Butch Cassidy (Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid)
J. B. Books (The Shootist)
Scarlet O'Hara (Gone with the Wind)
Rico Bandello (Little Caesar)
James T. Kirk (Star Trek)
Johnny Carson (The Tonight Show)
7 On the Pagep. 121
Anne Frank
Theodore Dreiser
Jean Valjean (Les Miserables)
Sidney Carton (A Tale of Two Cities)
Ignatius J. Reilly (A Confederacy of Dunces)
Harry (Rabbit) Angstrom (Rabbit at Rest)
Nick Carraway (The Great Gatsby)
Candide (Candide, or Optimism)
Joseph K. (The Trial)
Offisa Pupp (Krazy Kat)
Charles M. Schulz (Peanuts)
Richard Brautigan (Trout Fishing in America)
Mr. Kurtz (Heart of Darkness)
Unnamed "daemon" (Frankenstein, or The Modern Prometheus)
Werther (The Sorrows of Young Werther)
Uncle Tom (Uncle Tom's Cabin)
Beowulf ("Beowulf")
Broom Bromden (One Flew over the Cuckoo's Nest)
Emma Bovary (Madame Bovary)
8 By One's Own Handp. 141
Arthur Koestler
Marian (Clover) Hooper Adams
Erwin Rommel
Virginia Woolf
Kurt Donald Cobain
Yukio Mishima
Sara Teasdale
Bibliographyp. 152
Name Indexp. 153