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Wodehouse, P[elham] G[renville]

(1881 --1975) English writer and humorist. Wodehouse's blithe popular stories and novels about whimsical upper - class characters feature the Honourable Bertie Wooster; Psmith; Mr. Mulliner; Jeeves, the valet; and assorted peers, notably the absent - minded Lord Emsworth of Blandings Castle. Much of Wodehouse's humor derives from the contrast between the efficient servant Jeeves and the idle, dimwitted, but charming gentleman Wooster. His books contain fantasy, affectionate satire, and absurd farce. The style is rich with mock - pomposity, verbal ingenuity, and unexpected slang. Among his best - loved books are Leave It to Psmith (1923), Jeeves (1925), The Code of the Woosters (1938), French Leave (1956), and The Plot That Thickened (1973). Performing Flea (1953) and Over Seventy (1957) are amusing autobiographical works. Wodehouse also wrote and collaborated on a number of successful plays and musical comedies. Sunset at Blandings (1977), his unfinished last novel, was published posthumously, as were collections of his early stories, The Uncollected Wodehouse (1976) and The Scoop (1979). Wodehouse's velr conciliatory broadcasts from his internment in Nazi Germany aroused sharp criticism during and after World War II, leading George Orwell to write his essay In Defense of P. G. Wodehouse. Wodehouse eventually immigrated to the United States, where he became a U.S. citizen in 1955. He was knighted in 1975, shortly before his death.

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