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Twain's Twilight Years

Author Samuel Longhorne Clemens, better known under his pen name, Mark Twain, is seen in an undated photo. Twain died April 21, 1910. (AP)

The work of Mark Twain that lives forever in the world’s mind is of steamboats and boys, Huck Finn and Tom Sawyer and life on the Mississippi. 

The image of Mark Twain that lingers is older Twain. White hair. Wild brows. Big cigars. And lots of attitude. 

That Mark Twain was the most famous American, worldwide. 

Before he died, one hundred years ago this month – and, yes, when Haley’s Comet came by – Twain’s humor had darkened. His life had grown complicated. 

This Hour, On Point: the late work and late life of the great Mark Twain.

Guests:

Laura Skandera Trombley, president of Pitzer College and a renowned Twain scholar. Her new book is “Mark Twain’s Other Woman: The Hidden Story of His Final Years.”  You can read an excerpt here. Her previous books on Twain include “Mark Twain in the Company of Women.” For more information on  Trombley’s work on Twain, go to www.lauratrombley.com.

Tom Quirk, professor of English at the University of Missouri. He’s author of “Mark Twain and Human Nature” and “Mark Twain: A Study of the Short Fiction.”

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