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Robitaille, Gerald | Southern Illinois University Special Collections Research Center

Name: Robitaille, Gerald

Historical Note: Gerald Robitaille was a sometimes close friend and later a bitter enemy of Henry Miller. Born  in Outrement, Quebec, he began his correspondence with Henry Miller in 1951, and relocated to Paris in 1953 to be closer to him. In 1959 Miller hired Robitaille to act as caretaker of Miller’s children and later in 1966 he hired him on as a personal secretary. During his time in Miller’s employ, the family moved to California, which was not to Robitaille’s liking. He is quoted as saying, “I’d rather perish covered in lice in Paris then living with starlets, hippies, ping pong and Hollywood swimming-pools”. In 1971 the friendship ended after an essay entitled “Le Pere Miller [Papa Miller]: an indiscrete essay on Henry Miller” was published by Robitaille. Miller wrote one final letter to Robitaille and cut off all contact.  Robitaille went on to become an English professor for France’s Atomic Energy Commission in Saclay. He died in 1992.

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