American Isis by Carl Rollyson
The Life and Art of Sylvia Plath

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Mr. Rollyson's does provide an unusually careful account of Plath's final days...
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On the fiftieth anniversary of her death, a startling new vision of Plath—the first to draw from the recently-opened Ted Hughes archive

The life and work of Sylvia Plath has taken on the proportions of myth. Educated at Smith, she had an epically conflict-filled relationship with her mother, Aurelia. She then married the poet Ted Hughes and plunged into the sturm and drang of married life in the full glare of the world of English and American letters. Her poems were fought over, rejected, accepted and, ultimately, embraced by readers everywhere. Dead at thirty, she committed suicide by putting her head in an oven while her children slept.

Her poetry collection titled Ariel became a modern classic. Her novel The Bell Jar has a fixed place on student reading lists. American Isis will be the first Plath bio benefitting from the new Ted Hughes archive at the British Library which includes forty one letters between Plath and Hughes as well as a host of unpublished papers. The Sylvia Plath Carl Rollyson brings to us in American Isis is no shrinking Violet overshadowed by Ted Hughes, she is a modern day Isis, a powerful force that embraced high and low culture to establish herself in the literary firmament.


About Carl Rollyson

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Carl Rollyson is professor of journalism at Baruch College, CUNY. He is the author of more than thirty books, including biographies of Marilyn Monroe, Lillian Hellman, Martha Gellhorn, Norman Mailer, Rebecca West, and Susan Sontag. He is the advisory editor of the Hollywood Legends series.
Published January 29, 2013 by St. Martin's Press. 336 pages
Genres: Biographies & Memoirs, History. Non-fiction
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Above average
Reviewed by Micah Mattix on Jan 25 2013

Mr. Rollyson's does provide an unusually careful account of Plath's final days...

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