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Showing posts from March, 2016

Sylvia Plath Collections: Letters to Marion Freeman

In December 2015, Ruth Geissler (nee Freeman) donated twelve letters from Sylvia Plath to her mother Marion Freeman to Smith College in honor of her daughter Susan, Smith class of 1978. In my 2015: Year in Review post ,  I wrote a little bit about befriending Ruth as part of the forthcoming Letters of Sylvia Plath  book. There, I mention that I Karen V. Kukil and I visited Ruth in November but what was absent from the post was our purpose... Which was to collect the letters from Ruth, meeting at the time two of her daughters, Susan and Joan. The cache of twelve letters complements the Mortimer Rare Book Room's holdings of other Plath correspondence, joining letters to the late Marcia Brown Stern, Ann Davidow-Goodman, Philip McCurdy, Elinor Friedman Klein, Hans-Joachim Neupert, and Clarissa Roche. The dates of the twelve letters are as follows: 16 April 1946 4 November 1946 17 November 1951 1 January 1952 1 August 1952 16 January 1954 28 April 1955 circa 12 December

Sylvia Plath Bonhams Auction: The Results

Bonhams Knightsbridge held a Fine Books, Atlases and Manuscripts auction today 16 March 2016 . There were six lots of Sylvia Plath items, Lots 140-145. All lots sold and the typed letter in a birthday card was the big seller. Congrats to the owner(s) of this material! Here follows the results: Lot 140 Sylvia Plath Autograph drafts, notes, drawings and doodles for her story "Stardust", comprising a page of fairy sketches (with three red lipstick kisses applied by the author), [1946-47] Sold for £5,000 / US$7,088 Lot 141 Sylvia Plath Birthday card to her mother with autograph message signed ("much love to my favourite mummy! your Sivvy"), with a long typed letter within, Friday, 24 April [1953] Sold for £6,000 / US$8,605 Lot 142 Sylvia Plath Collection of typescripts of nine early poems, including "Ice Age", "In Memoriam", "Incident", "Crossing the Equinox" and others The other poems are: "I Have Found t

Esther Greenwood Hates Technicolour

According to the mimeographed schedule of Sylvia Plath's appointments while a Guest Editor at Mademoiselle , on 17 June 1953, she and the other Guest Editors to attend a tea at Vanity Fair (640 Fifth Avenue) at 3 pm, and then at 8 pm (probably) a film preview of Let's Do It Again ( IMDb ; Wikipedia ) at Columbia Pictures, 729 Seventh Avenue, New York, New York. However this was the day the editors were all down with ptomaine poisoning so... Anyway, in The Bell Jar , there is the most memorable scene before the ptomaine takes hold in the cinema: The movie was very poor. It starred a nice blonde girl who looked like June Allyson but was really somebody else, and a sexy black-haired girl who looked like Elizabeth Taylor but was also somebody else, and two big, broad-shouldered bone-heads with names like Rick and Gil.  It was a football romance and it was in technicolour.  I hate technicolour. Everybody in a technicolour movie seems to feel obliged to wear a lurid costume i

Sylvia Plath and Smith College's Campus Cat

The Campus Cat , Commencement 1952 In the spring of 1952, Sylvia Plath was a very active young woman at Smith College. Completing her sophomore year, Plath was doing well academically, but also socially and in terms of extracurricular activities. She was involved with Press Board, covering campus events as well as sending out news stories to local papers. But she was also involved with a small publication called the The Campus Cat . The Campus Cat was a publication created by Smith students in 1918. Its contents provided information to the campus about going-ons, events, activities, and poked fun at the rituals, trials, and stresses of academia and life on the Smith campus. Contributions to the periodical were anonymous, though the contributors were listed in the front of the magazine. In her 1952 calendar, held by the Lilly Library, Indiana University at Bloomington, Plath has three reminders on 3, 7, and 14 May 1952. On the 3rd she worked on writing her piece; on the 7th