Halper, Albert

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HALPER, ALBERT (1904–1984), U.S. novelist. His first novel, Union Square (1933), on a radical theme, was an immediate success. His experiences in a mail order house in his native Chicago and in the Chicago central post office found expression in his novels The Chute (1937), The Little People (1942), and The Golden Watch (1953), a story of a West Side Chicago Jewish family. The Chute showed Halper in retreat from the Jewishness of his immigrant parents, presenting a wholly negative picture of American Jewish life. In Sons of the Fathers (1940), however, he portrayed Jewish customs and ceremonies with objectivity and even sympathy. Atlantic Avenue (1956) is a story of violence in New York City. He recounted his struggle as a writer in Good-bye, Union Square, A Writer's Memoir of the Thirties (1970).


F. Champney, in: Antioch Review, 2 (1942), 628–34; S. Liptzin, Jew in American Literature (1966), 183–6. add. bibliography: J. Hart, Albert Halper (1980).

[Sol Liptzin]