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Louis Daniel Brodsky, a native of St. Louis, became seriously interested in William Faulkner in 1959 when, as an undergraduate student at Yale University, he studied Faulkner's novels and stories in R. W. B. Lewis's course in American Studies. Shortly thereafter, with the help of New Haven bookdealer Henry Wenning, he began to acquire first editions and inscribed copies of Faulkner's books. Over the next 30 years Brodsky gradually but persistently built his collection to a "world class" status, expanding his holdings to include manuscripts, letters, movie scripts, legal documents, photographs, and drawings, as well as books. In 1988, Brodsky transferred ownership of his collection to Southeast Missouri State University, but he continues to serve as curator of the materials, now developing the collection on behalf of the University. The story of the Brodsky Collection and its acquisition by Southeast Missouri State University is recounted in Nicholas Basbane's A Gentle Madness, a study of a number of noted contemporary book collectors.
In addition to being an outstanding book collector, Brodsky is a noted Faulkner scholar and poet. He is the author of William Faulkner: Life Glimpses, a collection of biographical essays; and he is co-editor, with Robert W. Hamblin, of a number of books and articles, including the multi-volume Faulkner: A Comprehensive Guide to the Brodsky Collection. Brodsky has also published more than 50 volumes of poetry, three of which--Mississippi Vistas, Disappearing in Mississippi Latitudes, and Mistress Mississippi--deal with Faulknerian themes and settings. His latest poems include a five-volume series, Shadow War, treating the events and aftermath of the September 11 terrorist attacks on the United States; You Can't Go Back, Exactly, which won the 2004 Award for the Best Book of Poetry from the Center for Great Lakes Culture at Michigan State University; and Still Wandering in the Wilderness: Poems of the Jewish Diaspora. A complete list of his poetry volumes can be found at the Time Being Books Web site. Brodsky's personal website, http://www.louisdanielbrodsky.com/, includes a number of his Faulkner publications: see http://www.louisdanielbrodsky.com/faulknermain.html.