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Showing posts from October, 2009

Frieda Hughes' Book of Mirrors out now

Bloodaxe Books published The Book of Mirrors by Frieda Hughes earlier this month, on 10 October, in the UK. The Book of Mirrors , packaged with Hughes' Stonepicker , was published earlier this year in the US. There are many poems of interest in this collection to readers of Sylvia Plath and Ted Hughes.

Picture Post

At Starbucks this morning, I couldn't help but notice what the person in front of me was reading. I just had to take a picture of "Words Read, by accident, Over the iPhone"... H.B. S.P.

Sylvia Plath: Double did you know...

Since October is, for us, unequivocally associated with Sylvia Plath, I thought I'd offer a special double did you know. I spoil you, I know. In 1994-1995, Tim Kendall founded the magazine Thumbscrew . His hope was that it would be an "antidote to a London poetry scene which appeared to outsiders as cosy, self-savouring, mediocre." Did you know that Thumbscrew 9, Winter 1997-1998, was a special issue on Sylvia Plath? The following is a list of citations for those articles which appeared in issue 9: Adcock, Fleur. "Why Plath is (Not) Very Important to Me." Thumbscrew 9. Winter 1997-1998: 2-3. Korelitz, Jean Hanff. "An Inexcusable Thing." Thumbscrew 9. Winter 1997-1998: 5-9. Quinn, Justin. "Plath as Exemplar." Thumbscrew 9. Winter 1997-1998: 11-12. Tyrrell, Patricia. "The Semtex Poet." Thumbscrew 9. Winter 1997-1998: 27-29. Kinsella, John and Tracy Ryan. "'Farther Off Than Australia': Some Australian Receptions o

Event of Plathian Interest at Columbia College Chicago

If you are in Chicago, or near Chicago, you may be interested in the following event sponsored by Columbia College, Chicago. If you have frequent flyer miles, I'd suggest redeeming them for this event. Karen Kukil will give a talk, “Sylvia Plath's Women and Poetry”, on Wednesday, October 21, 5:30 p.m. at the Music Center Concert Hall,1014 South Michigan Avenue. Click hither for more information . If anyone sees Eddie Cohen, can you please give him my number?

Yaddo at Smith

The exhibit " Unconquered by Flames: The Literary Light at Yaddo at Smith College " is one of 15 around the country celebrating the artist colony in Saratoga Springs, New York. The exhibit is all over the library, which I think is a wonderful use of their limited space. The Plath/Hughes experience is the largest of the exhibits, with the most "stuff" and the most cases. In addition to "Sylvia Plath '55 & Ted Hughes at Yaddo, 1959", which is in the Book Arts Gallery, Neilson level 3, there is the Exhibit Overview, Neilson Library, 1st floor entrance, Lola Ridge at Yaddo, 1929-1930, Sophia Smith Collection, Alumnae Gym, Newton Arvin at Yaddo, 1928-1960, Mortimer Rare Book Room, Neilson level 3, and Constance Carrier '29 at Yaddo, 1975 & 1978, Mortimer Rare Book Room, Neilson level 3. Each exhibit illustrates the subjects relationship with Yaddo as well as the results, or products, of the stay. Often a manuscript is side by side with the publi

American and British Poetry: A Guide to Criticism, 1925-1978

There is a book called American and British Poetry: A Guide to the Criticism, 1925-1978 , which was compiled by Harriet Semmes Alexander and published in 1984. It is a 2 volume book. Sylvia Plath is covered on pages 298-303. What this bibliography does is list works by Plath, and then gives citations of essays that discuss or mention the work. Of course, it only goes to 1978, so it is "older", but nevertheless I think it is an interesting reference tool. I don't think it's nearly complete either - based on what I've seen published before 1978, it seems skinny. But, it's a cool resources nonetheless. As the title indicates, it is only looking at Plath's poetry. Funnily enough, "Three Women" is not listed under "Three Women", but under "Poem for Three Voices." If your local town or college library doesn't have it - no worries. Google does !


If the article on "Sylvia Plath" in Alix Strauss' Death Becomes Them: Unearthing the Suicides of the Brilliant, the Famous, & the Notorious (Harper Collins, 2009) is typical of the others in the book, the general population that reads this work will, in the company of those who know something of the subject discussed, make fools of themselves. There are some truly heinous mistakes in the Plath piece. I forced myself not to jump right to Plath and read with interest about Virginia Woolf, Ernest Hemingway, and Hunter S. Thompson. I looked forward to Anne Sexton after Plath. I admit I don't know much about the suicides of the other people in the book, but after the Plath chapter I was so completely turned off to the point that the book in my hand was replaced by chocolate. There are far too many errors for me to try to correct here, but I'll just list a few because I cannot help myself. Before I continue, however, I do have to say that the book I received, k