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Anne Desclos was born to a bilingual family and began reading in French and English at an early age. After completing her studies at the Sorbonne, she worked as a journalist until 1946 when she joined Gallimard Publishers, originally as an editorial secretary. There she began using the pen name Dominique Aury. She had a brief marriage in her early twenties that produced a son. An avid reader of English and American literature, Aury became a highly respected translator of such authors as Swinburne, Waugh, Woolf, Eliot, Fitzgerald and many others, whose work she introduced to the French public. She also became a literary critic and was named to the juries of several prominent literary awards. She had a longtime affair with Jean Paulhan, a French writer and publisher who was married and 23 years her senior, and wrote "The Story of O" to please him. It appeared under the pseudonym Pauline Réage in 1954. Anne Desclos admitted authorship -- and her true identity -- many years later.
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