Joan Didion dead at 87 – Beloved American writer passes away from Parkinson's disease complication

BELOVED American writer Joan Didion has passed away at 87 from complications from Parkinson's disease.

The American fiction writer died on Thursday at her home in Manhattan, according to The New York Times.


Didion's death was confirmed by her publisher Paul Bogaards, an executive at Knopf.

Known for her novels Play It as It Lays and The Book of Common Prayer, Didion launched her career in the 1960s after winning an essay contest sponsored by Vogue magazine.

Her writing during the '60s through the late '70s engaged audiences in the realities of the counterculture of the '60s and the Hollywood lifestyle.

She was known for her series of intelligent, searching feature articles in Life magazine and The Saturday Evening Post that explored the fraying edges of postwar American life.

Didion later turned to political reporting, filing long essays for The New York Review of Books on the civil war in El Salvador and the Cuban immigrant community in Miami.

Her book on El Salvado was inspired after a two-week trip to Latin America country with her husband.

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In her later years, Didion abandoned traditional reporting and wrote about cultural criticism that focused on how the press and television interpreted certain events.

Several of these essays included, After Henry, and Political Fictions, which focused on the administrations of George Bush and Bill Clinton.

In 1991, she wrote the earliest mainstream media article to suggest the Central Park Five had been wrongfully convicted.

Didion examined severe flaws in the prosecution's case, becoming the earliest mainstream writer to view the guilty verdicts as a miscarriage of justice.

Didion is survived by her nephew Griffin Dunne.

Her husband, John Gregory Dunne, and her daughter, Quintana Roo Dunne, died in 2005.


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