Edith Templeton

Lucy Scholes at the Paris Review:

Such sexually explicit content became what Templeton was best known for during her lifetime—a reputation made yet more notorious due to the fact that she drew direct inspiration from her own illicit trysts. She was born into a wealthy upper-class family in Prague in 1916, and raised in a world of sophistication, civility, and gentility: this social milieu would have been shocked by such self-exposing erotica. Edith Passerová, as she was then, met her first husband, the Englishman William Stockwell Templeton, when she was only seventeen. They married five years later, in 1938, and lived in England. The union quickly disintegrated, but rather than return home to what by that point was a war-torn Europe, Templeton remained in Britain after their separation. She initially took a job with the American War Office, during which time she had the brief fling described in “The Darts of Cupid.” The story’s candid, violently charged eroticism caused a stir when it was first published in The New Yorker, but even its level of graphic sexual detail paled in comparison to that of Templeton’s most famous novel.

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