Adele Mailer, 90, an artist and actress who made headlines in 1960 when her husband, the novelist Norman Mailer, stabbed and seriously wounded her at a drunken party in their apartment, died on Sunday in Manhattan.
Adele Morales was an aspiring painter in 1951 when she met Mailer, the author of “The Naked and the Dead,” who was on his way to becoming recognized as one of the pre-eminent postwar American novelists. The two began living together and married three years later. It was Norman Mailer’s second marriage.
The relationship, marked by heavy drinking and ancillary love affairs on both sides, was stormy.
“I decided I was going to be that beautiful temptress who ate men alive, flossed her teeth and spit out the bones, wearing an endless supply of costumes by Frederick’s of Hollywood,” she wrote in her memoir “The Last Party: Scenes From My Life with Norman Mailer,” published in 1997. Her notion of romantic life, she wrote, was the opera “Carmen”: “You lived from crisis to crisis, sang love duets and had screaming fights.”
On the verge of announcing his improbable candidacy for mayor of New York, Norman Mailer decided to celebrate with a party at their apartment on the Upper West Side on Nov. 19, 1960.
He instructed his friend George Plimpton to summon the city’s power elite, handing him a list that included the police and fire commissioners, the banker David Rockefeller and the Aga Khan. None came, but the party could still be described as glittering, with attendees that included the poets Allen Ginsberg and Delmore Schwartz, the editor Norman Podhoretz and the actor Tony Franciosa.
With the liquor flowing, it all made for a volatile mix. In her memoir, Adele Mailer recalled having taunted her husband, bluntly deriding his manhood, referring to “your ugly whore of a mistress” and following with an obscenity. Some guests recalled that the point of no return came when she told her husband that he was not as good as Dostoevski.
Norman Mailer stabbed her in the stomach and back with a penknife, puncturing her cardiac sac.
Adele Mailer initially told doctors that she had fallen on broken glass. Later, in the intensive care unit of University Hospital, she told the police that her husband had stabbed her.
Mailer was charged with felonious assault and committed to Bellevue Hospital for psychiatric observation.
He was released from Bellevue after 17 days and in November 1961, after pleading guilty to a reduced charge of third-degree assault, received a suspended sentence. The couple divorced the next year.
Adele Carolyn Morales was born on June 12, 1925, in Brooklyn.
She took art classes with Hans Hofmann, studied literature at the New School for Social Research and threw herself into downtown cultural life. She had a romance with Jack Kerouac and, before meeting Mailer, was in a relationship with Edwin Fancher, who later founded the Village Voice with Mailer and Dan Wolf.
After the divorce, Adele Mailer, who had studied at the Actors Studio, appeared in several off-Broadway productions, including Norman Mailer’s theatrical adaptation of his novel “The Deer Park” in 1967. She also appeared in a small role in his 1970 film “Maidstone.”
Stephen Birmingham, 86, who wrote approximately 30 books, almost all of which were about the superwealthy, died Nov. 15 at his home in New York of cancer. “I think rich people are more interesting than poor people,” he told the Cincinnati Enquirer in 1984.
His biggest hit was the 1967 nonfiction “Our Crowd” about the Jewish elite in New York, but Birmingham was an equal opportunity chronicler, also writing about blacks, the Irish and others, as long as they had big money, whether old or nouveau. He felt they had been misrepresented.
“Our Crowd,” subtitled “The Great Jewish Families of New York,” was so successful that he wrote two follow-up books: “The Grandees: America’s Sephardic Elite” (1971) and “The Rest of Us: The Rise of America’s Eastern European Jews” (1984).
In his most prolific period, from the late 1960s into the 1990s, Birmingham turned out nearly a book a year.
Birmingham was born May 28, 1929, in Hartford, Conn. He worked in advertising and wrote for magazines before trying his hand at books.
Austin H. Kiplinger, 97 who with his father started what is now Kiplinger’s Personal Finance Magazine and expanded the family’s financial publishing company into a $100 million-a-year enterprise, died Nov. 20 in Rockville, Md.
The cause was brain cancer, said his son Knight, the editor-in-chief and president of the company, Kiplinger Washington Editors.
Kiplinger’s father, W.M. Kiplinger (1891-1967), started the company in Washington in 1920 and began publishing an economics newsletter in 1923. In 1947, he and Austin Kiplinger started Kiplinger’s Magazine, which was billed as the first personal financial advice publication for American families.
It was reincarnated as Changing Times and finally as Kiplinger’s Personal Finance, a monthly. The company continues to publish the Kiplinger Letter, a widely read weekly business and economic forecasting publication, as well as tax and agriculture newsletters.
After his father’s death, Austin Kiplinger expanded the company to embrace a website, books and DVD guides and seminars. His own sons inherited the company’s day-to-day management about 15 years ago, but Kiplinger, as editor emeritus and nonexecutive board chairman, continued to go to his office regularly until about a month ago.
Austin Huntington Kiplinger was born in Washington on Sept. 19, 1918. His father was a former economics correspondent for the Associated Press. His mother was the former Irene Austin.
After helping his father inaugurate Kiplinger’s Magazine, he joined the Chicago Journal of Commerce, where he wrote a front-page daily business column and hosted a 15-minute business news TV program.
Kiplinger worked for ABC and NBC affiliates in Chicago before rejoining the family firm in 1956. When his father died, he became editor-in-chief and board chairman.
Kiplinger was a benefactor of the National Symphony Orchestra, the Historical Society of Washington and other cultural institutions in the nation’s capital. He was a trustee of Cornell, his alma mater, for more than 50 years
As the university’s trustee board chairman in the mid-1980s, he opposed complete divestiture of the university’s investments in U.S. companies doing business in South Africa. Rather, he supported targeted investment in the most progressive companies.
As a civil rights advocate, Kiplinger joined the 1963 March on Washington.
In 1978, he intervened to avoid what might have been an international incident when Mstislav Rostropovich, the Russian cellist, whom he had helped recruit as conductor of the National Symphony Orchestra, joined striking musicians at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, where they were about to be arrested for picketing on federal property.
To prevent an embarrassing arrest of Rostropovich, a human rights advocate, Kiplinger personally urged the interior secretary to intercept park police before they could make the arrest. Rostropovich was spirited off to the Kiplingers’ Maryland farm.