Brigid Antonia Brophy, Lady Levey (born June 12, 1929, in London, England; died August 7, 1995, in Louth, Lincolnshire, England) was an English novelist, essayist, critic, biographer, and dramatist.

In the Dictionary of Literary Biography: British Novelists since 1960, S. J. Newman described her as "one of the oddest, most brilliant, and most enduring of the 1960s symptoms."

She was a feminist and pacifist who expressed controversial opinions on marriage, the Vietnam War, animal rights, religious education in schools, sex (she was openly bisexual [1]), and pornography.

In response to her outspokenness, Brophy was labeled many things, including "one of our leading literary shrews" by a Times Literary Supplement reviewer. "A lonely, ubiquitous toiler in the weekend graveyards, she has scored some direct hits on massive targets: Kingsley Amis, Henry Miller, Professor Wilson Knight." Brigid Brophy was also a very passionate advocate of animal rights and a promoter of vegetarianism.

Brophy was married to art historian Sir Michael Levey.

She was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis in 1984, which would claim her life at the age of 66 in 1995.

Writings by the author


  • The Crown Princess and Other Stories, Viking (New York, NY), 1953.
  • Hackenfeller's Ape, Hart-Davis (London), 1953, Random House (New York, NY), 1954, Virago Press (London), 1991.
  • The King of a Rainy Country, Secker & Warburg (London), 1956, Knopf (New York, NY), 1957, reprinted with afterword, Virago Press, 1990.
  • Flesh, Secker & Warburg, 1962, World (Cleveland, OH), 1963.
  • The Finishing Touch (also see below), Secker & Warburg, 1963, revised edition, GMP (London), 1987.
  • The Snow Ball (also see below), Secker & Warburg, 1964.
  • The Finishing Touch [and] The Snow Ball, World, 1964.
  • The Burglar (play; first produced in London at Vaudeville Theatre, February 22, 1967), Holt (New York, NY), 1968.
  • In Transit: An Heroicycle Novel, Macdonald & Co. (London), 1969, Putnam (New York, NY), 1970, Dalkey Archive Press, (Chicago, IL), 2002.
  • The Adventures of God in His Search for the Black Girl: A Novel and Some Fables, Macmillan (London), 1973, Little, Brown and Company (Boston), 1974.
  • Pussy Owl: Superbeast (for children), illustrated by Hilary Hayton, BBC Publications (London), 1976.
  • Palace without Chairs: A Baroque Novel, Atheneum (New York, NY), 1978.


  • Black Ship to Hell, Harcourt (New York, NY), 1962.
  • Mozart the Dramatist: A New View of Mozart, His Operas and His Age, Harcourt, 1964, revised edition, Da Capo (New York, NY), 1990.
  • Don't Never Forget: Collected Views and Reviews, Cape (London), 1966, Holt, 1967.
  • (With husband, Michael Levey, and Charles Osborne) Fifty Works of English and American Literature We Could Do Without, Rapp & Carroll (London), 1967, Stein & Day (New York, NY), 1968.
  • Religious Education in State Schools, Fabian Society (London), 1967.
  • Black and White: A Portrait of Aubrey Beardsley, Cape, 1968, Stein & Day, 1969.
  • The Rights of Animals, Animal Defence and Anti-Vivisection Society (London), 1969.
  • The Longford Threat to Freedom, National Secular Society (London), 1972.
  • Prancing Novelist: A Defence of Fiction in the Form of a Critical Biography in Praise of Ronald Firbank, Barnes & Noble (New York, NY), 1973.
  • Beardsley and His World, Harmony Books (New York, NY), 1976.
  • The Prince and the Wild Geese, pictures by Gregoire Gagarin, Hamish Hamilton (London), 1982, St. Martin's (New York, NY), 1983.
  • A Guide to Public Lending Right, Gower (Hampshire, England), 1983.
  • Baroque 'n' Roll and Other Essays, David & Charles (North Pomfret, VT), 1987.
  • Reads: A Collection of Essays, Cardinal (London), 1989.


  • Best Short Plays of the World Theatre, 1958-1967, Crown (New York, NY), 1968
  • Animals, Men and Morals, edited by Godlovitch and J. Harris, Gollancz (London), 1971
  • The Genius of Shaw, edited by Michael Holroyd, Hodder & Stoughton (London), 1979
  • Animal Rights: A Symposium, edited by D. Paterson and R. D. Ryder, Centaur Press (West Sussex, England), 1979
  • Shakespeare Stories, edited by Giles Gordon, Hamish Hamilton, 1982.

A collection of Brophy's manuscripts are housed in Lilly Library at Indiana University at Bloomington.

External links

More biographical details [2]

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