M. G. Stephens
Born in Washington, D.C., to an Irish father and an American mother, M. G. Stephens grew up in Bedford-Stuyvesant, Brooklyn and Long Island in a family of sixteen children. His fiction often portrays the crises of large immigrant families in existential struggles to survive in America. He attended the City University of New York (City College), where he earned his B.A. and M.A. in English and writing, and then attended Yale University, earning an M.F.A. in drama (writing, theatre history, and dramatic literature). Many years later he earned a Ph.D. in literature and American studies from the University of Essex in Colchester, England. He wrote his thesis—the British doctoral study—on the origins of the St. Mark’s Church in the Bowery’s Poetry Project.
He has published many works of short lyrical prose, including Paragraphs, Still Life, Shipping Out, Circles End, and Jigs and Reels. His first book of poetry, Alcohol Poems, came out in 1973, followed by Tangun Legend (1978), Translations, from Korean (1984), After Asia (1993), and more recently Occam’s Razor (2015) and Top Boy (2017). These books have been praised by poets and fiction writers as diverse as Seamus Heaney, Gilbert Sorrentino, William Arrowsmith, Hubert Selby, Jr. and Maureen Howard. He is also the author of the acclaimed novels The Brooklyn Book of the Dead and Season at Coole. He has published several nonfiction works, including the travel memoir Lost in Seoul (1990) and the memoir Where the Sky Ends (1999); and such essay collections as The Dramaturgy of Style and Green Dreams (1994), winner of the AWP award for creative nonfiction.
History of Theatre or the Glass of Fashion grew out of his interests in theatre history, an obsession with Hamlet, and his lifelong passion for the prose poem.
History of Theatre or the Glass of Fashion,
a collection by M. G. Stephens,
is now available from MadHat Press.