Martin Flavin

Franklin Library Martin Flavin books

Journey in The Dark - Library of Pulitzer Prize Classics - 1978


Writer Martin Flavin

Martin Flavin, born on November 14, 1883, in San Francisco, California, was an American playwright and novelist whose career spanned the early to mid-20th century. He is best known for his playwriting achievements and his significant contributions to American literature. Flavin's early life was marked by a passion for literature and writing. He attended St. Ignatius College in San Francisco and later studied at the University of California, Berkeley. Although he initially pursued a career in journalism, his love for storytelling led him to focus on fiction and drama.

In the 1920s, Martin Flavin gained recognition for his novels, including Mr. Littlejohn (1922) and Journeys End (1924). However, it was his venture into playwriting that brought him widespread acclaim. In 1928, he achieved a major breakthrough with his play The Criminal Code, a courtroom drama that explored themes of justice, morality, and the human condition. The play's success marked the beginning of Flavin's prominence in the American theatrical landscape. The Criminal Code was followed by another successful play, Broken Dishes (1929), which further established Flavin as a skilled playwright. In 1931, he won the Pulitzer Prize for Drama for his play Journey in the Dark, a poignant exploration of the psychological toll of war. Throughout his career, Flavin continued to write novels and plays, exploring a variety of themes and genres. His works often delved into the complexities of human relationships, social justice, and the moral dilemmas faced by individuals in different circumstances.

Despite his literary achievements, Flavin's later works did not achieve the same level of success as his earlier plays. However, his impact on American drama during the early 20th century was significant, and his plays were well-received for their depth of characterization and exploration of moral and ethical issues. Martin Flavin passed away on December 27, 1967, leaving behind a legacy of plays and novels that contributed to the rich tapestry of American literature. While his name may not be as widely recognized today, his works remain important in the context of American drama, and his exploration of timeless themes continues to resonate with those interested in the human experience.

Journey in The Dark

In a sensitive and full dimensioned portrayal of American life, Martin Flavin has created a memorable character. By turns admirable, pitiable, tough, noble, weak, futile, and brilliantly effective, a lonely man going nowhere in the dark, Sam Braden mirrors thousands like him who have put their familiar stamp upon the American way of life.

He wanted wealth, and he got it. He wanted to belong to the social world in which the Wyatts moved so easily, and in time he did. Most of all he wanted Eileen Wyatt, and this too he achieved, but only after a fashion. To explain this average man who had wanted success above everything, and who achieved an enviable degree of it and yet who never escaped from the prison of his loneliness, Martin Flavin takes the reader back to the friendly, democratic world that existed along the Mississippi in the Eighties, to the influences which shaped the boy and fixed the pattern of the man.

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