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Erich Wolf Segal (born June 16, 1937 in Brooklyn, New Yorkmarker) is an Americanmarker author, screenwriter, and educator.

Early life

The son of a rabbi, Segal attended Midwood High Schoolmarker in Brooklyn and traveled to Switzerlandmarker to take summer courses. He attended Harvard Collegemarker, graduating as both the class poet and Latin salutatorian in 1958, after which he obtained his master's degree (in 1959) and a doctorate (in 1965) in comparative literature, from Harvard Universitymarker.

Teaching career

Segal was a professor of Greek and Latin literature at Harvard University, Yale Universitymarker and Princeton Universitymarker. He now is teaching at Wolfson College, Oxfordmarker.

Writing career

Yellow Submarine

In 1967, from the story by Lee Minoff, he wrote the screenplay for The Beatles' 1968 motion picture, Yellow Submarine.

Love Story

In the late 1960s, Segal collaborated on other screenplays, and also had written a synthetic romantic story by himself about a Harvardmarker student and a Radcliffe student, but failed to sell it. However, literary agent Lois Wallace at the William Morris Agency suggested he turn the script into a novel and the result was a literary and motion picture phenomenon called Love Story. A New York Times No. 1 bestseller, the book became the top selling work of fiction for all of 1970 in the United Statesmarker, and was translated into 33 languages worldwide. The motion picture of the same name was the number one box office attraction of 1971.

Erich Segal went on to write more novels and screenplays, including the 1977 sequel to Love Story, called Oliver's Story.

Writing and teaching after Love Story

He has published a number of scholarly works as well as teaching at the university level. He has acted as a visiting professor for the University of Munichmarker, Princeton University, and Dartmouth Collegemarker. He has written widely on Greek and Latin literature. His novel The Class (1985), a saga based on the Harvard Class of 1958, was also a bestseller, and won literary honour in Francemarker and Italymarker. Doctors was another New York Times bestseller from Segal.


Segal has been married to Karen Marianne James since 1975; they have two daughters. One, Francesca Segal, born in 1980, is a freelance journalist and literary critic and currently The Observer’s Debut Fiction columnist.




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