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Marc Brandel (born Marcus Beresford) (March 28, 1919 - November 16, 1994) was an internationally known novelist and television writer. Clifford Wright's open attitude about sex, perhaps informed by his Seattle artist friends, like Morris Graves, whose polyamorous nonconformity is well documented, led him to physical intimacy with both men and women. Some of his conquests, like poet Ralph Pomeroy, formed an emotional and sexual attachment to Wright, while others, like the British writer March Brandel, had kinky leanings that were not to Wright's tastes. Wright's undated diary entry about Brandel stated, "My red headed novelist colleague has flown his colors and it was discovered that he was the favorite tart in his English boy's school, that he was brought to America by the secretary to Neville Chamberlain (from whom he swiped one thousand bucks and whipped off to Mexico), that he is sadistic with women (he brought his jointed whipping cane with him), that he offers to make me do until a suitable female arrives. Though he is a jolly companion, I gently rejected his kind proposal."
Born in London, England on March 28, 1919, Marcus Beresford attended St. Catherine's College, Cambridge and Westminster College, then served in the British Merchant Marine during World War II. He started writing in his twenties and published a number of novels throughout his life, including "Rain Before Seven" (1945), "The Lizard's Tail" (1979), and "A Life of Her Own" (1985). From the 1950s to the 1970s, Brandel also wrote for a number of popular American and British television series, including "The Wednesday Play" (UK), "Escape" (UK), and "Barnaby Jones" (US).
The Barriers Between is an intense Freudian novel focused on three Americans living and working in Mexico. Jordan Bushnel is a troubled artist providing art and illustration for magazines in the U.S. His love interest is Sylvia. The final member of the love triangle is fellow artist, Richard Slater, whom Sylvia attempted to bed in the past but is now just a friend (who also happens to be gay). The novel opens with Jordan on the run and declares his culpability in the murder of Richard two days earlier. Told through flashback, what follows is a description of the events of those two days that reveals much about Jordan's state of mind. Why did he snap? Both Richard and Sylvia think that Jordan might be gay. Jordan can't explain his attraction to Richard but doesn't interpret it as homosexual interest (although others do). Richard frequently launches subtle barbs suggesting something about Jordan's sexuality. A significant amount of the dialogue is given over to Jordan's inner conversations in which we learn about his feelings of inadequacy as regards his role in the war. Unable to serve due to a medical condition, he sees his work as an artist-correspondent lacking in masculine credibility. Richard's service as a pilot during the war and his comfort with being gay is a challenge to Jordan's view of himself in the world. Jordan traces his feelings back to the events of his childhood including the stereotypical overbearing mother and emasculated father.
Marc Brandel passed away in 1994, in Santa Monica, CA.
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