Mark Harris

Novelist + Screenwriter + Memoirist + Academic
Born Nov 19, 1922
Hometown Mount Vernon, New...
Died May 30, 2007
Death Place Santa Barbara, Ca...
Nationality United States
Other Names Finklestein, Mark...

Mark Harris was an American novelist, literary biographer, and educator.

related links

News + Updates

Browse recent news and stories about Mark Harris.


Learn about the memorable moments in the evolution of Mark Harris.


1922 Birth Born on November 19, 1922.


1940 17 Years Old After graduating in 1940 from Mount Vernon High School, he dropped his surname because “it was a difficult time for kids with Jewish names to get jobs.” He subsequently went to work for Paul Winkler’s Press Alliance news agency in New York City as a messenger and mimeograph operator.


1943 20 Years Old He was drafted into the United States Army in January 1943.
His growing opposition to war and his anger at the prevalence of racial discrimination in the Army led him to go AWOL from Camp Wheeler, Georgia, in February 1944. … Read More
1945 22 Years Old In July 1945 he was hired by the International News Service and moved to St. Louis.
While there, he met coworker Josephine Horen, whom he would marry in March 1946.
1948 25 Years Old In February 1948, Harris abandoned journalism to enroll in the University of Denver, from which he received a Master's degree in English in 1951.


1956 33 Years Old 1 More Event
He obtained a PhD in American Studies from the University of Minnesota in 1956, writing his doctoral dissertation on the progressive writer and intellectual Randolph Bourne.
1960 37 Years Old In 1960, while in his first college teaching position, at San Francisco State College, Harris promoted his then-most-recent book in a TV appearance as guest contestant in "You Bet Your Life", the game played on The Groucho Show.
1961 38 Years Old In the first chapter of his 1961 classic The Rhetoric of Fiction, Wayne C. Booth quotes the "fine young novelist" Harris as saying: "You will no more expect the novelist to tell you precisely how something is said than you will expect him to stand by your chair and hold your book." … Read More


1980 57 Years Old In September 1980, he joined the faculty of Arizona State, where he was a professor of English and taught in the creative writing program until his retirement in 2001.


2007 85 Years Old Died on May 30, 2007.
Original Authors of this text are noted on
Text is made available under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License.