Cover image for The portable Dorothy Parker.
The portable Dorothy Parker.
Parker, Dorothy, 1893-1967.
Personal Author:
Revised and enlarged edition with a new introduction / by Brendan Gill.
Publication Information:
New York : Penguin Books, 1976.
Physical Description:
xxviii, 610 pages ; 20 cm.
General Note:
First published in 1944 under title: Dorothy Parker.

Includes index.
Pt. 1. The original Portable as arranged by Dorothy Parker in 1944 -- Pt. 2. Later stories, reviews and articles.
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
PS3531.A5855 A6 1976 Adult Non-Fiction Non-Fiction Area
PS3531.A5855 A6 1976 Adult Non-Fiction Non-Fiction Area

On Order



Stories, poems, articles, and reviews by the American humorist reveal the range of her wit and satire.

Author Notes

Poet and short story writer Dorothy Parker was born in New Jersey on August 22, 1893. When she was 5, her mother died and her father, a clothes salesman, remarried. Parker had a great antipathy toward her stepmother and refused to speak to her. She attended parochial school and Miss Dana's school in Morristown, New Jersey, for a brief time before dropping out at age 14. A voracious reader, she decided to pursue a career in literature. She began her career by writing verse as well as captions for a fashion magazine.

During the years of her greatest fame, Dorothy Parker was known primarily as a writer of light verse, an essential member of the Algonquin Round Table, and a caustic and witty critic of literature and society. She is remembered now as an almost legendary figure of the 1920s and 1930s. Her reviews and staff contributions to three of the most sophisticated magazines of this century, Vanity Fair, the New Yorker, and Esquire, were notable for their put-downs. For all her highbrow wit, however, Dorothy Parker was liberal, even radical, in her political views, and the hard veneer of brittle toughness that she showed to the world was often a shield for frustrated idealism and soft sensibilities. The best of her fiction is marked by a balance of ironic detachment and sympathetic compassion, as in "Big Blonde," which won the O. Henry Award for 1929 and is still her best-remembered and most frequently anthologized story.

The best of Dorothy Parker is readily and compactly accessible in The Portable Dorothy Parker. Her own selection of stories and verse for the original edition of that compilation, published in 1944, remains intact in the revised edition, but included also are additional stories, reviews, and articles.

Parker died of a heart attack at the age of 73 in 1967. In her will, she bequeathed her estate to the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. foundation. Following King's death, her estate was passed on to the NAACP. (Bowker Author Biography)

Reviews 1

Library Journal Review

The great Parker gets the red-carpet treatment as her "Portable" is bumped up to a "Deluxe Edition" (go, Dottie!). The text includes her short fiction, poems, book and theater reviews, letters, and more. A wonderful extra is the quickie biography in simple drawings adorning the front and rear inside cover flaps. Though probably better known today for her one-liners, Parker should be taken seriously as one of the great writers, female or otherwise. This beautifully executed edition does her justice. (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.