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Guide to the Noël Riley Fitch Julia Child Papers
1912 - 2011

Fales Library and Special Collections
Elmer Holmes Bobst Library
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Fales Library and Special Collections

Collection processed by Liza Harrell-Edge, 2012. Finding aid edits by Rhyannon J. Rodriguez.

This finding aid was produced using ArchivesSpace on May 22, 2017
Description is in English.

Biographical Note

Noël Riley Fitch (1937-) was born in New Haven, Connecticut, and educated at Northwest Nazarene College (B.A., 1959) and Washington State University (M.A., 1965 and Ph.D., 1969), and subsequently completed postdoctoral NEH seminar studies at Princeton (1976) and Yale (1979). She was professor of literature (1971-1987) and chair of the Department of Literature and Modern Languages (1982 -1985) at Point Loma College. She was a lecturer at the University of Southern California from 1986 to 2007 and the American University of Paris from 1987 to 2007.

Working with the full cooperation and exclusive authorization of Julia Child, Noël Riley Fitch conducted thorough research into Child's life and completed extensive interviews with those in her broad circle to write Appetite for Life: The Biography of Julia Child (1997, 2012). Fitch went on to write further articles about Child and collaborated with the A&E Biography of her produced in 1997.

Fitch is also the author of a number of books exploring cafe culture in Europe and particularly Paris including The Grand Literary Cafes of Europe (2007), covering the history of coffee and the coffeehouse and featuring nearly 40 cafes in 20 countries, from London To Moscow, Lisbon to Bucharest and Rome;  Literary Cafes of Paris (1989) with descriptions, history, anecdotes, and comments on the food and drink of nearly thirty establishments central to the literary life of France, America and England; and  Paris Cafe: The Select Crowd (2007), a personal look into the workings and daily rhythm of a cafe and its famous as well as anonymous clientele co-authored with illustrator Rick Tulka.

Other major work by Fitch includes Anaïs: The Erotic Life of Anaïs Nin (1993),  Hemingway in Paris: Parisian Walks for the Literary Traveller (1989) and   Sylvia Beach and the Lost Generation: A History of Literary Paris in the Twenties and Thirties (1983). In addition, she co-edited, with Richard Etulain,  Faith and Imagination (1985, 2012) and she published numerous articles, including [four] about Julia Child:

“Meanwhile: America honors its favorite 'French Chef',”  International Herald Tribune. 24 July 2003.

“Notre Dame de la cuisine and the Prince des Gastronomes,”  Gastronomica; The Journal of Food and Culture. Summer, 2005: 73-79.

“Child at Heart,”  Paris Notes. Cover essay. March, 2007.