Novelist, born in New York City, USA. He served in the US Army Air Force in World War 2, and studied at New York, Columbia, and Oxford universities. His wartime experience formed the background for his first book, Catch 22 (1961), which launched him as a successful novelist. The anti-war plot centred on the view that US airmen on dangerous combat missions must be considered insane, but if they seek to be relieved on grounds of mental derangement, they find themselves ineligible, since such a request proves their sanity. Hence ‘Catch 22’ has come to signify any logical trap or double bind. A sequel, Closing Time, appeared in 1994. His other works include Something Happened (1974), God Knows (1984), Picture This (1988), and the autobiographical Now and Then: From Coney Island to Here (1998).
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