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Aldous Huxley

Biography

Aldous Huxley was born in 1894 in Godalming, Surrey. His famous ancestors included his grandfather, T H Huxley, one of the first supporters of Charles Darwin; his great-grandfather, Dr Arnold, Headmaster of Rugby School; Arnold’s son, Matthew, the poet and essayist; Arnold’s granddaughter, Mrs Humphry Ward, a famous novelist in her time, though now long since forgotten and more remembered for her staunch opposition to women’s suffrage and for bringing up her two nephews, Aldous and Julian, after their mother died.

Aldous attended Eton but contracted a serious eye disease which left him nearly blind and forced him to leave school. While only fourteen, his mother died. His brother, Trevenen, killed himself six years later. Aldous read English at Balliol College, Oxford, where he got a First. He published his first poetry while at Oxford. After Oxford, he taught briefly at Eton, where one of his pupils was Eric Blair, later to obtain fame under the pseudonym George Orwell.

He then moved to London and became a literary journalist and, in 1919, married a Belgian woman, Maria Nys. They had a son, Matthew. His first novel – Crome Yellow – was published in 1921 and brought him fame and money.

He continued to publish successful novels and essays and used the money to live abroad, mainly in Sanary, in France, which was later to be the home of many German exile writers, including Thomas Mann. After suffering from depression and insomnia, Huxley moved to the United States and became a pacifist and was interested in mysticism. He and his friend Gerald Heard travelled around the United States, finally settling in California, where Huxley became a screenwriter.

In the 1950s Huxley contracted another eye disease, which left him almost totally blind. He began using LSD and mescalin and wrote about them in The Doors of Perception and Heaven and Hell. Maria Huxley died in 1955 and, the following year, he married Laura Archera. He was still writing but his reputation was fading and he spent a lot of time lecturing. He died of cancer on 22 November 1963, the day of the Kennedy assassination and the same day C S Lewis died. While Brave New World is still remembered and read, his other fiction is now considered lightweight.

Books about Aldous Huxley

Sybille Bedford: Aldous Huxley: a Biography
Dana Sawyer: Aldous Huxley: a Biography
Nicholas Murray: Aldous Huxley

Other sites

Aldous Huxley
Aldous Huxley
Aldous Huxley
Aldous Huxley
Aldous Huxley
Aldous Huxley
Aldous Huxley
Aldous Huxley (1894-1963)
Aldous Huxley 1894 – 1963
Out of Sight The curious career of Aldous Huxley
Meeting with Aldous Huxley (from Albert Hofmann: LSD, My Problem Child)
Culture and the Individual (article by Huxley)
Aldous Huxley on Self-Transcedence
The Capitalist”Free Press” (article by Huxley)
The Case for Constructive Peace (article by Huxley)
BRAVE NEW WORLD ? A Defence Of Paradise-Engineering
Centre for Aldous Huxley Studies
Interview
Laura Huxley
A Discussion with Laura Huxley

Bibliography

1916 The Burning Wheel (poetry)
1917 Jonah (poetry)
1918 The Defeat of Youth and other Poems (poetry)
1920 Leda (poetry)
1920 Limbo: Six Stories and a Play
1921 Crome Yellow (novel)
1922 Mortal Coils: Five Stories
1923 Antic Hay (novel)
1923 On the Margin: Notes and Essays
1924 Little Mexican (US. Young Archimedes) (short fiction)
1924 The Discovery (drama)
1925 Selected Poems
1925 Selected Poems (poetry)
1925 Those Barren Leaves (novel)
1925 Along the Road: Notes and Essays of a Tourist
1926 Essays New and Old
1926 Jesting Pilate: An Intellectual Holiday (The Diary of a Journey)
1926 Two or Three Graces: Four Stories
1927 Proper Studies
1928 Point Counter Point (novel)
1929 Arabia Infelix and other Poems (poetry)
1929 Do What You Will: Essays
1929 Holy Face and other Essays
1930 Brief Candles (US. After the Fireworks) (short fiction)
1930 Vulgarity in Literature and other Essays: Digressions from a Theme
1931 Music at Night and other Essays
1931 Texts and Pretexts: An Anthology of Commentaries
1931 The Cicadas and other Poems (poetry)
1931 The World of Light (drama)
1932 Brave New World (novel)
1932 Rotunda (selections)
1932 T. H. Huxley as a Man of Letters
1933 Retrospect: An Omnibus of Aldous Huxley’s Books
1934 Beyond the Mexique Bay
1936 Eyeless in Gaza (novel)
1936 The Olive Tree and other Essays
1936 What Are You Going To Do About It? The Case for Reconstructive Peace
1937 Ends and Means: An Inquiry into the Nature of Ideas and into the Methods Employed for Their Realization
1937 Stories, Verses and Poems
1937 The Elder Peter Bruegel
1938 The Gioconda Smile: A Story
1938 The Most Agreeable Vice
1939 After Many a Summer (US: After Many a Summer Dies the Swan) (novel)
1940 Words and Their Meanings
1941 Grey Eminence: A Study in Religion and Politics (A Biography of Father Joseph)
1942 The Art of Seeing
1943 Orion (poetry)
1944 Time Must Have a Stop (novel)
1944 Twice Seven: Fourteen Selected Stories
1945 The Perennial Philosophy
1946 Science, Liberty and Peace
1946 Verses and a Comedy
1947 The World of Aldous Huxley: An Omnibus of His Fiction and Non-Fiction over Three Decades
1948 Ape and Essence (novel)
1948 The Gioconda Smile (drama)
1949 Food and People
1949 Prisons (with the Carceri Etchings by Piranesi)
1950 Themes and Variations
1952 The Devils of Loudoun
1953 A Day in Windsor (with J. A. Kings)
1954 The Doors of Perception
1955 The Genius and the Goddess (novel)
1956 Adonis and the Alphabet and other Essays (US: Tomorrow and Tomorrow and Tomorrow)
1956 Heaven and Hell
1957 Collected Short Stories.
1958 Brave New World Revisited
1959 Collected Essays
1960 On Art and Artists
1961 Selected Essays
1962 Island (novel)
1963 Literature and Science
1963 The Politics of Ecology: The Question of Survival.
1965 The Ambassador of Captripedia (drama)
1967 The Crows of Pearblossom (children’s)
1968 Form and Substance
1968 New Fashioned Christmas
1969 Great Short Works of Aldous Huxley
1969 The Letters of Aldous Huxley
1970 America and the Future: An Essay
1971 The Collected Poetry
1972 Christmas Sketch (drama)
1976 Aldous Huxley; Exhumations: Correspondance inédite avec Sydney Schiff, 1925-1937
1977 Moksha: Writings on Psychedelics and the Visionary Experience (1931-1963)
1977 The Human Situation: Lectures at Santa Barbara 1959
1983 Selections
1994 Aldous Huxley’s Hearst Essays
1994 Between the Wars: Essays and Letters