The fiction of the sexually ambiguous Carson McCullers offers uncomfortable resistance to the social ideal of neat heterosexuality.
When her first novel, The Heart is a Lonely Hunter, was published to acclaim in 1940, McCullers, at only twenty-three, seemed set for a lifetime of literary glory. In fact, some believe that, in a life beset by illness, she never realized her full potential. Still, her corpus, though short, is impressive and spans a variety of genres from novel and short story to plays, the odd magazine article, and even some poetry. A number of her novels have also been brought to film.McCullers had several strokes in the 1940s and suffered a final stroke in 1967, which left her in a coma for 46 days. She died on September 2, 1967.