United States journalist and author Tom Wolfe died at the age of 88 in Manhattan, New York, on Tuesday. Wolfe’s agent, Lynn Nesbit said the author had been hospitalised with an infection prior to his death.
Wolfe was known for stimulating the New Journalism movement with his publication of a 1973 essay collection of the same name, The Guardian reported. He was also an advocate of “saturation reporting” – a technique whereby the reporter shadows their subject over a long period, observing minute details.
He also published best-selling non-fiction books such as The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test, and novels like Bonfire of the Vanities.
Born in 1931, Wolfe studied at the Springfield Union in Massachusetts. He later moved to New York, where he joined the New York Herald Tribune as a reporter in 1962.
Wolfe was known for being a contrarian, as well as “for his attire and his satire”, The New York Times reported on Tuesday. “He was instantly recognisable as he strolled down Madison Avenue – a tall, slender, blue-eyed, still boyish-looking man in his spotless three-piece vanilla bespoke suit, pinstriped silk shirt with a starched white high collar, bright handkerchief peeking from his breast pocket, watch on a fob, faux spats and white shoes,” the daily said in its obituary.