The story, which is a fantasy of the corruption of innocence, concerns a 14- or 15-year-old boy, well-dressed and well-spoken, who — when we meet him — has been sitting daily on a bench in front of a hotel in a nameless American city. He is observed by an elderly astrologer named Cox, who speaks to Malcolm one day and learns that the boy is waiting for his father, who has disappeared. Cox seizes psychological dominance over him and sends him on a series of visits ostensibly to integrate him with the world but which ultimately destroy him.
Adapted from James Purdy’s novel Malcolm (1959).
Type: Full-length Play
First Performed: 11 January 1966, Shubert Theatre, New York
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