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Tuesday, September 15, 2009

'Basketball Diaries' Author and Punk Icon Carroll Died

Basketball Diaries Punk Icon Carroll Dies

Jim Carroll, author of the famed Basketball Diaries, died on Friday of a heart attack. Carroll's life was forever shaped by his extensive Heroin use which is what most of his prose consisted of. Despite dying at, what many would consider, a young age, 60, he left behind a legacy that we all can cherish. He gave the world a close up, in depth, view of the trials and tribulations of an addict. In the 1970s, Jim Carroll played a major role in the New York art scene, where he mixed with artists such as Andy Warhol, Patti Smith, Larry Rivers and Robert Mapplethorpe. The 'Basketball Diaries' author and punk icon died from a heart attack at his home in Manhattan, his ex-wife Rosemary Carroll told The New York Times.

Carroll's poetry and other works were amazing, but, it was his gritty autobiographical tale of growing up in New York and ultimately becoming a drug addict, who went so far as to prostitute himself, that drew the most attention. "The book, which began life as a journal, was first published in 1978 and then became even more popular, particularly on college campuses, when it was issued as a mass-market paperback two years later", according to the NPR. It was adapted into a film in 1995 and it starred Leonardo DiCaprio. I always will remember the story as giving, arguably, the best portrayal of the progression of the disease of addiction; moreover, it showed people there was a way out if one so chose to do what was needed.

Jim Carroll starting writing poetry at a very young age. "Carroll was in his teens when he first received recognition for his poems, especially "Organic Trains" in 1967 and then "4 Ups and 1 Down" in 1970. Among his other works are collections such as The Book of Nods (1986), Fear of Dreaming (1993) and Void of Course: Poems 1994-1997 (1998)" reports the NPR. You can feel the pain in his words and you can hear his cries for help. So many pop icons have passed away this year it is almost unbelievable. However, it is uplifting to know that Carroll, unlike so many suffering from this disease, remained a productive member of society until the end of his days.

1 comment:

  1. so sad, i just watch the basketball diaries, and hen find this :'(


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