S. T. Joshi
S. T. Joshi
S. T. Joshi (2002 promotional photo)
|Born||June 22, 1958|
|Citizenship||United States since 1978|
Sunand Tryambak Joshi (born June 22, 1958) is an American writer, musician, critic and award-winning scholar whose work has largely focused on weird and fantastic fiction, especially the life and work of H. P. Lovecraft and associated writers. Joshi is a lifelong scholar and editor of H. P. Lovecraft and restored Lovecraft's texts for Arkham House. He has published a lengthy biography of H. P. Lovecraft, I Am Providence: The Life and Times of H. P. Lovecraft (2 vols). Additionally, Joshi has been a prolific editor of works of weird fiction by various authors and a historian of the field across a number of volumes. He has also written extensively on atheism and rationalism, as well as forms of prejudice including sexism and racism. Joshi lives with his wife, Mary Krawczak Wilson, in Seattle, Washington. Joshi's autobiography What Is Anything?: A Life in Lovecraft was published in 2019.
His literary criticism focuses upon the worldviews of authors. His The Weird Tale examines horror and fantasy writing by Arthur Machen, Algernon Blackwood, Dunsany, M. R. James, Bierce and Lovecraft.
The Modern Weird Tale examines modern writers, including Shirley Jackson, Ramsey Campbell, Stephen King, Robert Aickman, Thomas Ligotti, T. E. D. Klein and others, from a similar viewpoint. The Evolution of the Weird Tale (2004), includes essays on Dennis Etchison, L. P. Hartley, Les Daniels, E. F. Benson, Rudyard Kipling, David J. Schow, Robert Bloch, L. P. Davies, Edward Lucas White, Rod Serling, Poppy Z. Brite and others. Unutterable Horror: A History of Supernatural Fiction (published in two volumes, 2012 by PS Publishing) is a history of supernatural fiction from Gilgamesh.
Joshi and David E. Schultz edited volumes of Lovecraft's letters with Necronomicon Press (including those to Robert Bloch, Henry Kuttner, Samuel Loveman and Vincent Starrett); for Night Shade Books (Mysteries of Time and Spirit: Letters to Donald Wandrei) and Letters from New York; and for University of Tampa Press (O Fortunate Floridian: Letters to Robert H. Barlow). Some of these volumes have now been published in expanded editions by Hippocampus Press.
Joshi and Schultz are now progressively issuing volumes through Hippocampus Press of H. P. Lovecraft's letters to his correspondents. Lovecraft's letters to Rheinhart Kleiner; Alfred Galpin; August Derleth (2 volumes); Robert E. Howard (2 volumes); James F. Morton; Elizabeth Toldridge & Anne Tillery Renshaw; F. Lee Baldwin, Duane Rimel & Nils Frome; J. Vernon Shea, Carl F. Strauch & Lee McBride White; Robert Bloch; and Clark Ashton Smith have been published.
Joshi edited the five-volume set of Lovecraft's Collected Essays issued by Hippocampus Press from 2004 to 2006. He edited two annotated volumes of Lovecraft's best work for Dell books (the second with Peter H. Cannon). He and David E. Schultz edited the collected poetry of Clark Ashton Smith, issued by Hippocampus Press (3 volumes, 2007–2008) and the collected poetry of George Sterling (3 volumes, 2013).
Joshi was general editor of Cthulhu Mythos works from Perilous Press, including works by Michael Shea and Brian Stableford. The first publication was Shea's Copping Squid and Other Mythos Tales (2009), with Stableford's volume titled The Womb of Time (two Mythos novellas).
Joshi has published on atheism, including Documents of American Prejudice (1999), an annotated collection of American racist writings; In Her Place (2006), which collects written examples of prejudice against women; and Atheism: A Reader (2000), which collects atheistic writings by Antony Flew, George Eliot, Bertrand Russell, Emma Goldman, Gore Vidal and Carl Sagan, among others. An Agnostic Reader, collecting pieces by Isaac Asimov, John William Draper, Albert Einstein, Frederic Harrison, Thomas Henry Huxley, Robert Ingersoll, Corliss Lamont, Arthur Schopenhauer and Edward Westermarck, was published in 2007.
Joshi published God's Defenders: What They Believe and Why They Are Wrong (2003), an anti-religious polemic against various writers including C. S. Lewis, G.K. Chesterton, T.S. Eliot, William F. Buckley, Jr., William James, Stephen L. Carter, Annie Dillard, Reynolds Price, Elisabeth Kübler-Ross, Guenter Lewy, Neale Donald Walsch and Jerry Falwell. It is dedicated to theologian Robert M. Price.
In 2006 he published The Angry Right: Why Conservatives Keep Getting It Wrong, which criticized the political writings of such commentators as William F. Buckley, Jr., Russell Kirk, David and Rush Limbaugh, Ann Coulter, Phyllis Schlafly, William Bennett, Gertrude Himmelfarb, Irving Kristol and William Kristol, arguing that Americans have become steadily more liberal.
In 1987, Joshi became the fifth Official Editor of the Esoteric Order of Dagon. He has continued to be the OE of this amateur press association for upwards of 30 years.
Joshi has edited Lovecraft Studies (1979–2001) and Studies in Weird Fiction (1986–2005), both published by Necronomicon Press; and Studies in the Fantastic (2008–09), published by the University of Tampa Press. He edited for some time Weird Fiction Review (Centipede Press; 2010); and is ongoing editor of the Hippocampus Press journals Spectral Realms (from 2014); Lovecraft Annual (from 2007); Nemesis (from 2016) and Penumbra (from 2020). He was formerly co-editor of Dead Reckonings (from 2007).
In 2011, Joshi became editor-in-chief of The American Rationalist magazine, which he edited for some years before changes at the magazine resulted in the discontinuation of his involvement.
Joshi, born in Puna, India, emigrated with his family to the US at the age of four. He was raised (primarily by his mother, an academic) in Illinois and Indiana, while his father (also an academic) remained in India, though his father eventually joined the family in the States.
Joshi discovered the work of Lovecraft at age 13 in a public library in Muncie, Indiana. He also read L. Sprague de Camp's biography of Lovecraft, Lovecraft: A Biography, on publication in 1975, and began thereafter to devote himself to Lovecraft. This devotion led him to decline offers from Yale and Harvard so that he could attend Brown University. He received a B.A. (1980) and M.A. (1982) in classics. After graduating, he undertook additional graduate school at Princeton University, from 1982 to 1984.
In August 2014, Joshi opposed the campaign to change the World Fantasy Award statuette from a bust of Lovecraft to one of African-American author Octavia Butler. As a person of colour, Joshi has been an ardent defender of Lovecraft's reputation and of the necessity to hold a balanced perspective on Lovecraft's racist attitudes given the general tenor of social attitudes during the times in which Lovecraft lived. Joshi returned his several World Fantasy Awards in protest at the decision to no longer utilise Gahan Wilson's statuette of Lovecraft as the award. The World Fantasy Award has since been changed to one of a leafless tree in front of a moon in bronze designed by sculptor Vincent Villafranca.
- H. P. Lovecraft: A Life (West Warwick, RI: Necronomicon Press, 1996). (Paperback, with a 250 copy limited hardcover printing). A condensed version was issued as A Dreamer and a Visionary: H. P. Lovecraft in His Time (Liverpool University Press, 2001). The Necronomicon Press edition was reissued in 2004 (paperback) with a new Afterword by Joshi. A new revised/uncut edition (as I Am Providence: The Life and Times of H. P. Lovecraft) (2 vols, hardcover) has been issued in 2010 (Hippocampus Press); this restores 150,000 words cut for space reasons from the original edition, and is also thoroughly revised and updated in regard to new information on Lovecraft that has come to light since 1996.
- John Dickson Carr: A Critical Study (Bowling Green University Popular Press, 1990). (Nominated for the 1991 Anthony Award for "Best Critical / Non-fiction work".)
- Lord Dunsany: Master of the Anglo-Irish Imagination (Greenwood Press, 1995). ISBN 9780313294037.
- The Rise and Fall of the Cthulhu Mythos (Mythos Books, 2008). ISBN 9780978991180.
- Sixty Years of Arkham House: A History and Bibliography (Arkham House, 1999). ISBN 9780870541766.
- The Weird Tale (University of Texas Press, 1990). ISBN 9780292790575.
Lovecraft and the Cthulhu Mythos
- Miscellaneous Writings by H. P. Lovecraft (Arkham House, 1995).
- The Call of Cthulhu and Other Weird Stories by H. P. Lovecraft (Penguin Classics No. 1, 1999).
- The Thing on the Doorstep and Other Weird Stories by H. P. Lovecraft (Penguin Classics No. 2, 2001).
- The Dreams in the Witch House and Other Weird Stories by H. P. Lovecraft (Penguin Classics No. 3, 2005).
Works by others, reference works, etc.
- Algernon Blackwood, The Complete John Silence Stories (Dover Publications, 1997).
- Bram Stoker, Best Ghost and Horror Stories of Bram Stoker (with Richard Dalby and Stefan Dziemianowicz) (Dover Publications, 1997).
- Great Weird Tales (Dover Publications, 1998).
- Ambrose Bierce, The Unabridged Devil's Dictionary (with David E. Schultz) (2000).
- Rudyard Kipling, The Mark of the Beast and Other Horror Tales (Dover Publications, 2000).
- Great Tales of Terror (Dover Publications, 2002).
- Barry Pain, An Exchange of Souls/Henri Béraud, Lazarus (Hippocampus Press, 2007).
- Francis Brett Young, Cold Harbour/Leland Hall, Sinister House (Hippocampus Press, 2008).
- The Complete Poetry and Translations of Clark Ashton Smith (Hippocampus Press, 2012)(Three Volumes)
- Maurice Level, Thirty Hours with a Corpse and Other Tales of the Grand Guignol (Dover Publications, 2016).
- Edward Lucas White, The Stuff of Dreams: The Weird Stories of Edward Lucas White (Dover Publications, 2016).
- The Cold Embrace: Weird Stories by Women (Dover Publications, 2016).
Introductions and forewords
- Walter de la Mare, The Return (Dover Publications, 1997).
- Leigh Blackmore. Spores from Sharnoth & Other Madnesses. (P'rea Press,2008, 2010; Rainfall Books, 2010).
- William F. Nolan & Jason V Brock, ed., The Bleeding Edge (Cycatrix Press, 2009) [signed/limited].
- Jason V Brock & William F. Nolan, ed., The Devil's Coattails (Cycatrix Press, 2012) [signed/limited].
- Curtis M. Lawson, Black Heart Boys' Choir (Wyrd Horror, 2019)
- Washington Irving. The Legend of Sleepy Hollow and Other Stories (Tartarus Press, 2009).
- Voltaire God and Human Beings (Prometheus Books, 2010), the first translation of the work Dieu et les hommes (tr. Michael Shreve).
- Horror Writers Association – Bram Stoker Award for Nonfiction 
1996 H. P. Lovecraft: A Life (Necronomicon Press) – Author
- British Fantasy Society – British Fantasy Award for Best Small-Press Publication 
1997 H. P. Lovecraft: A Life (Necronomicon Press) – Author
- International Association for the Fantastic in the Arts – IAFA Distinguished Critic Award 
- World Fantasy Award – Special Award for Professional Scholarship 
- International Horror Guild – Outstanding Achievement in Horror & Dark Fantasy for Nonfiction 
2005 Supernatural Literature of the World (Greenwood Press) – Co-editor
- International Horror Guild – Outstanding Achievement in Horror & Dark Fantasy for Nonfiction 
2006 Icons of Horror and the Supernatural (Greenwood Press) – Editor
- World Fantasy Award – Special Award Non-Professional 
2013 Unutterable Horror: A History of Supernatural Fiction, Volumes 1 & 2 (PS Publishing) – Author
He has since returned his awards from the World Fantasy Convention for their decision to discontinue use of the bust of H. P. Lovecraft as the basis for their awards.
- "H. P. Lovecraft: A Life". The H. P. Lovecraft Archive. Retrieved February 15, 2009.
- Joyce Carol Oates (October 31, 1996). "The King of Weird". The New York Review of Books. 43 (17). Retrieved February 15, 2009.
- "S.T. Joshi: An Autobiography". Retrieved January 12, 2011.
- "New Fans: H. P. Lovecraft Is As Good As Poe, They Say". The Ludington Daily News. July 8, 1977. p. 11. Archived from the original on February 28, 2020 – via Newspapers.com.
- S. T. Joshi. "Blog". S. T. Joshi. Retrieved March 27, 2012.
- Laura Miller, It’s OK to admit that H. P. Lovecraft was racist, Salon, September 12, 2014.
- "Bouchercon World Mystery Convention : Anthony Awards Nominees". Bouchercon.info. October 2, 2003. Retrieved March 27, 2012.
- "November 10, 2015 – The World Fantasy Award". Retrieved September 10, 2015.
- Griffin, David. "Interview: S.T. Joshi". Carnage Hall No 4 (1993).
- Harksen, Henrik (ed). Out of the Shadows: An E.O.D. Tribute to S.T. Joshi. Odense, Denmark: H. Harksen Productions, 2004.
- Murray, Will. "S.T. Joshi: Re-editor". [interview] Comics Buyer's Guide (November 18, 1988); Dagon 24 (Jan–March 1989).
- New York Times profile
- "Lurking Terror: H. P. Lovecraft's Socialism" – Interview with Dr. James Hughes (Changesurfer Radio)
- 2004 Interview with Joshi at Temple of Dagon
- "YOG RADIO #29: Interview with S.T. Joshi" – Audio interview with Yog-Sothoth.com
- Interview with S.T. Joshi at AcidLogic
- Official S. T. Joshi Website
- S. T. Joshi at the Internet Speculative Fiction Database
- Audio interview with Joshi at Agony Column
- "Fright and Freethought – S.T. Joshi" – Audio interview with Joshi by Robert M. Price
- "The Strange, Impossible Worlds Of Horror Fiction`s Modern Masters". Review of Joshi's The Weird Tale by Robert Chatain in The Chicago Tribune
- The Strange, Impossible Worlds Of Horror Fiction's Modern Masters
- Interview with Joshi by James McAlmont at Fruitless Recursion
- S. T. Joshi at Library of Congress Authorities, with 105 catalog records