Norman Kingsley Mailer was an American novelist, journalist, essayist, playwright, film-maker, actor and political activist. His first novel, The Naked and the Dead, was published in 1948. His best-known work was widely considered to be The Executioner’s Song, which was published in 1979, and for which he won one of his two Pulitzer Prizes. In addition to the Pulitzer Prize, his book Armies of the Night was awarded the National Book Award.
Along with Truman Capote, Hunter S. Thompson and Tom Wolfe, Mailer is considered an innovator of creative nonfiction, a genre sometimes called New Journalism, which superimposes the style and devices of literary fiction onto fact-based journalism.
Mailer was also known for his essays, the most renowned of which was The White Negro. He was a cultural commentator and critic, both through his novels, his journalism, his essays and his frequent media appearances.