In Memoriam Tom Wolfe

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Wolfe also worked for The Washington Post and Esquire before going on to write several popular books, including The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test-which documented the rise of hippies in the '60s-the Bonfire of Vanities and The Right Stuff. He edited the influential collection The New Journalism, which included essays by Joan Didion, Truman Capote, Norman Mailer, and others.

Wolfe became a major figure in the NY social scene, identified with his distinct personal style - typified by a white, 3-piece suit.

Wolfe continuously strove to break down both journalistic and literary "rules", eschewing what he considered the stiffness of the generation that preceded him. One summer Wolfe had a white suit made, but it was too warm, so he wore it in December and found that it "really irritated people -- I had hit upon this harmless form of aggression". He died May 14, 2018, at a New York City hospital at age 88.

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Wolfe, the grandson of a Confederate rifleman, began his journalism career as a reporter at the Springfield (Mass.) Union in 1957.

Born and Raised in Richmond, Virginia, to an agronomist father and a mother who was a landscape architect, Wolfe traced his love for literature to the books his parents kept on their bookshelves. "They called my brilliant manuscript "journalistic" and 'reactionary, ' which means I must go through with a blue pencil and strike out all the laughs and anti-Red passages and slip in a little liberal merde, so to speak, just to sweeten it".

"My contention is that status is on everybody's mind all of the time, whether they're conscious of it or not, " Wolfe, who lived in a 12-room apartment on Manhattan's Upper East Side, told the AP in 2012. "The Painted Word" targeted the world of art. "The question is not only whether Tom Wolfe can be taken seriously but whether he can be taken at all", a Time magazine critic wrote in 1968. Since childhood, Tom Wolfe dreamed of becoming a writer. He is survived by his wife Sheila and son Tommy. He was 87 years old.