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About Grant Allen
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Grant Allen

About Grant Allen

An Interview with Grant Allen

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Grant Allen was born on February 24, 1848 near Kingston, Ontario, in Canada. Though largely forgotten today, during his lifetime he was a prolific and popular writer who published widely in diverse areas, which were as various as his own intellectual pursuits that ranged from the sciences to literature. Titles of several of his books reveal his breadth of interests, including The Evolutionist at Large (1881), and Biographies of Working Men (1884). As a naturalist and professed socialist, he embraced a number of radical views for his time, such as the advancement of women's rights. For example, his novel The Woman who did (1895), espoused a then controversial literacy critique of sexual conventions and marriage. His best stories, which featured the notorious conartist and thief, Colonel Clay, first appeared in the Strand Magazine and later were collected in the book, An African Millionaire: Episodes in the Life of the Illustrious Colonel Clay (1897), commonly regarded by many critics as the first fictional work to feature a criminal protagonist.

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