Gould, Lois 1932(?)-2002

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GOULD, Lois 1932(?)-2002

(Lois Benjamin)

OBITUARY NOTICE—See index for CA sketch: Born c. 1932; died of cancer May 29, 2002, in New York, NY. Novelist. Gould gained fame for penning fiction that frankly portrays the emotional lives of women and addresses sexual issues. A graduate of Wellesley College, where she earned a bachelor's degree, she then embarked on a journalism career, working for such periodicals as the New York Times and the Long Island Star Journal. Her early publications, written under the name Lois Benjamin, included the nonfiction books Sensible Childbirth: The Case against Natural Childbirth (1962; written with Waldo L. Fielding) and So You Want to Be a Working Mother! (1966). After her first husband, novelist Philip Benjamin, died, she discovered that he had been having affairs with some of their friends. Gould, who later married psychiatrist Robert Gould, drew on her emotional distress from this experience tor write the novel Such Good Friends (1970), which involves a similar situation. The novel created a stir due to its frank portrayal of a woman's emotions and sexual desires, and it was adapted as a 1971 film directed by Otto Preminger. After her fiction debut, Gould continued to write novels involving women characters and difficult personal relationships, among them Necessary Objects (1972), A Sea-Change (1976), and No Brakes (1997). She also wrote about her relationship with her emotionally distant mother in Mommy Dressing: A Love Story, after a Fashion (1998). Although labeled by some as a feminist writer, Gould always maintained that she was simply trying to portray people's emotions in a truthful way. In addition to her books, she was a former editor at McCall's, the founder and editor of Insider's Newsletter (now Look magazine), and author of the "Hers" column in the New York Times.



American Women Writers: A Critical Reference Guide from Colonial Times to the Present, second edition, St. James Press (Detroit, MI), 2000.


Los Angeles Times, June 4, 2002, p. B11.

New York Times, May 29, 2002, p. C14.

Washington Post, June 2, 2002, p. C8.