The Outward Room, a story about madness, love and life on the edge was published in 1937. Author Millen Brand, who would later go on to co-write the Academy award nominated screenplay for The Snake Pit , received critical acclaim for this first outing, which was radical in it’s unsentimental approach and subject matter for the time.
Set in the Great Depression, it follows the journey of Harriet, who escapes from a mental institution and hops a train to New York City where she is lost in a hand-to-mouth existence on the fringes of society until she meets John, a machine factory worker who sparks an awakening in her that leads to a process of self discovery. It was adapted for Broadway in 1939 as The World We Make.
Brand’s later association with members of the Hollywood Ten led to his questioning by the House Un-American Activities Committee for which he refused to testify, invoking the Fifth Amendment.
Peter Cameron, author of the novels Leap Year, One way or Another and Someday this Pain Will Be Useful to You amongst others, will be reading excerpts from this novel at BookCourt on 163 Court Street (between Pacific and Dean), Brooklyn on the Wednesday, November 3rd at 7pm. For more information call (718) 875-3677.