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Du Bois, Theodora

Entry updated 12 September 2022. Tagged: Author.

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(1890-1986) US playwright and author whose first short stories were published in 1920, but who is best known for her many detective novels, often on medical themes, and for several fantasies, including her first novel, The Devil's Spoon (1930), in which a young devil takes over a human being in order to fight against Satan's plans for the world [for Devils and Satan see The Encyclopedia of Fantasy under links below; see also Gods and Demons]; The Devil and Destiny (1948), another tale about possession; and Sarah Hall's Sea God (1952), a Slick Fantasy at novel length [see The Encyclopedia of Fantasy under links below]. Murder Strikes an Atomic Unit (1946) verges on sf, as does High Tension (1950), in which the very Near Future neo-Nazi Loyalty and Friendship Organization, based in New York, attempts to destabilize America; and in Solution T-25 (1951), the USSR wins World War Three with the use of nuclear Weapons, occupying the USA. Afterwards, an underground resistance, faking collaboration with the occupation forces, develops Solution T-25, which dissolves the Soviet leadership's authoritarian personality structures, turning them into benign humorists incapable of commanding their forces. An impolitic frankness about McCarthyism in Seeing Red (1954) caused her publisher, Doubleday and Company, to drop her, and her career slowed nearly to a stop. [JC]

Theodora Brenton Eliot McCormick du Bois

born Brooklyn, New York: 14 September 1890

died New York: 1 February 1986



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