“Wild 90” premieres 7 January, and “Beyond the Law” 2 April.
Preceded by magazine publication (Part I in Harper’s and Part II in Commentary), The Armies of the Night is published by New American Library on 6 May, 20 years to the day after The Naked and the Dead. His account receives almost unanimously favorable and enthusiastic reviews, including a front page review by Alfred Kazin in the New York Times Book Review on 5 May.
In July, makes his third experimental film, “Maidstone,” on Long Island. Mailer plays a famous director, Norman T. Kingsley, and Rip Torn plays his half-brother Raoul. After formal photography is over, Raoul-Torn attacks Kingsley-Mailer with a hammer and they fight. After the recriminations melt, Mailer uses the attack, which was filmed, as the conclusion of the film.
In August, covers the national political conventions, and publishes his account, Miami and the Siege of Chicago, first in Harper’s and then in book form on 24 October.
A Selection from the Short Fiction of Norman Mailer, edited with notes by Iwao Iwamoto. Tokyo: Shohakusha, softcover, 88 pp. Unusual English language edition containing three stories set in Japan and the Philippines during and after WWII: “The Paper House,” “The Language of Men” and “The Dead Gook.” Rpt: 52.2, 52.3, 53.2, 59.13, 67.11, 82.19. See 74.19.
Letter to the editor. Newsweek, 23 December, 7. Mailer corrects four errors in 68.29, the most important of which is: “No publisher ever forced me to censor The Naked and the Dead [48.2]. I decided to use the word fug before the book was even begun. In those days the big brother of fug was simply not ready for public hire.” Rpt: 14.3. See 49.3, 65.21, 92.12, 95.53. See 13.2, 791.
“Norman Mailer’s Open Letter to Richard Nixon.” Newsweek, 9 December, 85. Accompanies 68.29. Rpt: 72.7, 82.19.
“Flying High with Mailer.” Article-interview by Raymond A. Sokolov. Newsweek, 9 December, 84, 86-88; cover photograph of Mailer. Profile with brief Mailer comments sprinkled throughout, mainly from earlier writing and interviews. Accompanied by 68.30. See 68.31.
“At Play in the Fields of the Bored.” Article by James Toback. Esquire, December, 150-55, 22, 24, 26, 28, 30, 32, 34, 36. The most extended account of the filming of Maidstone, prefaced by Toback’s memories of his earlier contacts with Mailer. Rpt: Mailer included excerpts in Maidstone: A Mystery (71.28). See 68.14–68.17, 71.30.
“Miami Beach and Chicago.” Harper’s, November, 41-52, 55- 66, 69-84, 89-104, 107-30; cover story. Nonfiction narrative. Appeared at virtually the same time as the American book versions (68.25). The only difference between the versions is that the title of the first chapter in 68.25 is “Miami Beach, August 3-9.” In 68.27, it is “Miami Beach, August 5-9.” The correct dates for Mailer’s coverage of the Republican convention are 2-8 August, as noted in the partial reprint in The Time of Our Time (98.7). Rpt: 76.5.
“When Irish Eyes Are Smiling, It’s Norman Mailer.” Article-interview by Vincent Canby. New York Times, 27 October, Sec. 2, p. 15. Brief profile followed by a lively discussion of moviemaking, Mailer’s movie, “Beyond the Law,” The Armies of the Night (68.8), the Irish and the Jews. Rpt: 88.6. See 84.18.
Miami and the Siege of Chicago: An Informal History of the Republican and Democratic Conventions of 1968. New York: World, 24 October; simultaneously as a softcover: New York: New American Library; London: Weidenfeld and Nicolson, November or December, with different subtitle: An Informal History of the American Political Conventions of 1968. Nonfiction narrative, 223 pp., $5.95.
Dedication: “To my Father.” Nominated for the National Book Award in the history and biography category. Rpt: 68.27, 76.5, 98.7 (partial). See 68.18, 69.3, 72.7.
…you end up writing best about those historic events which have a magnetic relation to your own ideas and tend to write less well about situations where that doesn’t occur. I think, for example, Miami and the Siege of Chicago is probably a better book than St. George and the Godfather [72.17]. For a number of reasons including the fact that the conventions themselves were more exciting, but also because there was a polarity in ’68 more congenial to me than in ’72. (75.11)
“Norman Mailer in Focus.” Article-interview by William Foster. Week-End Scotsman, 19 October, 1. In London to promote The Armies of the Night (68.8), Mailer comments on the influence of Leo Tolstoy, William Faulkner and Ernest Hemingway, his films, and race relations in the U.S.