22 February 2010

Coming Soon: The Spoken Word: Sylvia Plath

Look for a new CD, The Spoken Word: Sylvia Plath, published by the British Library, on 14 April 2010. Advanced orders will be accepted via the British Library's website in mid-March. Readers of this blog will be eligible for a 10% discount; look for an update here about that, also in mid-March.

This is a major publication and one that will mean incredibly much to the readers of this blog. For those unfamiliar, the Spoken Word is a series by the British Library, taken from their own Sound Archives as well as from the BBC's. Of interest possibly are the two, double CD's of Ted Hughes. Other poets included in the series are Edith Sitwell, W. H. Auden, and Stevie Smith, to name but a few. Each CD in the series has an introductory essay in the booklet, which also lists the tracks, recording dates, series, etc. I'll continue below, but please read the advanced notice announcement:

"Sylvia Plath is widely regarded as one of the most influential poets and authors of the 20th Century. Her frank, confessional style of writing won her many fans around the world, and she remains very popular over forty years after her death. This new CD from British Library Publishing brings together BBC recordings from the British Library Sound Archive, and includes Plath discussing and reading from her work. A particular highlight is a 1961 recording of a BBC programme Plath recorded with her husband, Ted Hughes, where they talk about their marriage and what it means to live with your muse. Many of these recordings are being published here for the first time."

The previously unpublished recordings include the interview Two of a Kind: Poets in Partnership, surviving extracts from A World of Sound: What Made You Stay?, a review of Donald Hall's Contemporary American Poetry, and the poem "Tulips" recorded live at the Poetry at the Mermaid Festival in London on 17 July 1961, and more. This is an amazing collection of audio tracks, one that will continue to lend vigor to the study of Sylvia Plath.

This is the first Plath audio release in more than three decades with new, previously unreleased recordings!!


Anonymous said...

Exciting news, Peter! Shame that it took so long - for years the shelves seemed to have CDs of almost every poet [i]but[/i] Plath reading their work :-). I'm looking forward to the release! ~VC

P.Viktor said...

This is very exciting news Peter - would you mind if I cross-post on my blog linking back?

I can't wait to get my hands on this CD!

All the best


Peter K Steinberg said...

Cross-post away! I was thinking you'd wait a day, so that the news of your new poetry collection could get all the wonderful attention it deserves. Congrats, by the way!

P.Viktor said...

Thanks Peter! Indeed, I will post tomorrow I think. Very exciting - we finally get to hear Two Poets! P

sarah said...

This would be amazing on vinyl!

Sorlil said...

What exciting news, can't wait!

Melanie Smith said...

Thank you for this news.
Waits excitedly!

Anonymous said...

This is like the best Monday ever. Thank YOU for the GOOD NEWS!

Kristina Zimbakova said...

Thank you, Peter. We all look forward to it. Amazing stuff.

P.Viktor said...

Hi Peter, here's my cross-post for your info:


Peter K Steinberg said...

Paull, very nice cross posting. Thank you!

Anonymous said...

Two thumbs way up! Thanks Peter! kim

panther said...

This is exciting news. And not before time! I've heard snippets of one or two of these before,and the very good interview she did with Peter Orr (she recorded "Daddy" on the same day) but now. . well, this is going to be great.

Peter K Steinberg said...

The Peter Orr reading & interview from 30 October 1962 is not on this CD. That recording is a British Council recording, and not originated by the BBC or BL.

Rehan Qayoom said...

This is wonderful news. The entire Spoken Word series from the BL has been incredible and unique.

Peter K Steinberg said...

I agree Rehan, the Spoken Word CD's I have heard have been top quality productions. The Plath CD promises to continue building the series in positive ways.

Daniel Darko said...

I cant wait to get this, I might pre-order through Amazon.

The only recordings of her voice Iv heard are on Youtube, the ones of her reading poems like "Daddy".

Anyway, Im very excited for this :D

Peter K Steinberg said...

I don't know what kind of discount Amazon is giving, but from mid-March if you order (or pre-order) through clicking a link on this blog (to be posted later) or my website, you'll receive a 10% discount.

Daniel Darko said...

Well Ill be using my Mother's credit card, she only likes using Amazon :( She's very wary of where she gives her credit card details.

Is there any other information on exactly what is on this CD?

Peter K Steinberg said...

I'm not sure if I'm allowed to disclose the contents, will find out and report back. My website (www.sylviaplath.info/poetryworks.html) lists all of the known recordings (see audio section). So it would be possible to piece together something in the meantime.


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Publications & Acknowledgements

  • BBC Four.A Poet's Guide to Britain: Sylvia Plath. London: BBC Four, 2009. (Acknowledged in)
  • Biography: Sylvia Plath. New York: A & E Television Networks, 2005. (Photographs used)
  • Connell, Elaine. Sylvia Plath: Killing the angel in the house. 2d ed. Hebden Bridge: Pennine Pens, 1998. (Acknowledged in)
  • Crowther, Gail and Peter K. Steinberg. "These Ghostly Archives." Plath Profiles 2. Summer 2009: 183-208.
  • Crowther, Gail and Peter K. Steinberg. "These Ghostly Archives, Redux." Plath Profiles 3. Summer 2010: 232-246.
  • Crowther, Gail and Peter K. Steinberg. "These Ghostly Archives 3." Plath Profiles 4. Summer 2011: 119-138.
  • Crowther, Gail and Peter K. Steinberg. "These Ghostly Archives 4: Looking for New England." Plath Profiles 5. Summer 2012: 11-56.
  • Crowther, Gail and Peter K. Steinberg. "These Ghostly Archives 5: Reanimating the Past." Plath Profiles 6. Summer 2013: 27-62.
  • Crowther, Gail and Peter K. Steinberg. These Ghostly Archives: The Unearthing of Sylvia Plath. Oxford: Fonthill, 2017. Forthcoming.
  • Death Be Not Proud: The Graves of Poets. New York: Poets.org. (Photographs used)
  • Doel, Irralie, Lena Friesen and Peter K. Steinberg. "An Unacknowledged Publication by Sylvia Plath." Notes & Queries 56:3. September 2009: 428-430.
  • Gill, Jo. "Sylvia Plath in the South West." University of Exeter Centre for South West Writing, 2008. (Photograph used)
  • Elements of Literature, Third Course. Austin, Tex. : Holt, Rinehart and Winston, 2009. (Photograph used)
  • Helle, Anita Plath. The Unraveling Archive: Essays on Sylvia Plath. Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press, 2007. (Photographs used, acknowledged in)
  • Helle, Anita. "Lessons from the Archive: Sylvia Plath and the Politics of Memory". Feminist Studies 31:3. Fall 2005: 631-652.. (Acknowledged in)
  • Holden, Constance. "Sad Poets' Society." Science Magazine. 27 July 2008. (Photograph used)
  • Making Trouble: Three Generations of Funny Jewish Women, Motion Picture. Directed by Rachel Talbot. Brookline (Mass.): Jewish Women's Archive, 2007. (Photograph used)
  • Plath, Sylvia, and Karen V. Kukil. The Unabridged Journals of Sylvia Plath, 1950-1962. New York: Anchor Books, 2000. (Acknowledged in)
  • Plath, Sylvia, and Peter K. Steinberg and Karen V. Kukil (eds.). The Letters of Sylvia Plath. London: Faber, 2017. Forthcoming.
  • Plath, Sylvia. Glassklokken. Oslo: De norske Bokklubbene, 2004. (Photograph used on cover)
  • Reiff, Raychel Haugrud. Sylvia Plath: The Bell Jar and Poems (Writers and Their Works). Marshall Cavendish Children's Books, 2008.. (Images provided)
  • Steinberg, Peter K. Sylvia Plath (Great Writers). Philadelphia: Chelsea House Publishers, 2004.
  • Steinberg, Peter K. "'I Should Be Loving This': Sylvia Plath's 'The Perfect Place' and The Bell Jar." Plath Profiles 1. Summer 2008: 253-262.
  • Steinberg, Peter K. "Sylvia Plath." The Spoken Word: Sylvia Plath. London: British Library, 2010.
  • Steinberg, Peter K. "'They Had to Call and Call': The Search for Sylvia Plath." Plath Profiles 3. Summer 2010: 106-132.
  • Steinberg, Peter K. "This is a Celebration: A Festschrift for The Unabridged Journals of Sylvia Plath." Plath Profiles 3 Supplement. Fall 2010: 3-14.
  • Steinberg, Peter K. "A Perfectly Beautiful Time: Sylvia Plath at Camp Helen Storrow." Plath Profiles 4. Summer 2011: 149-166.
  • Steinberg, Peter K. "Proof of Plath." Fine Books & Collections 9:2. Spring 2011: 11-12.
  • Steinberg, Peter K. "Textual Variations in The Bell Jar Publications." Plath Profiles 5. Summer 2012.
  • Steinberg, Peter K. "Writing Life" [Introduction]. Sylvia Plath in Devon: A Year's Turning. Stroud, Eng.: Fonthill Media, 2014.