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Showing posts from February, 2020

Sylvia Plath's copy of e.e. cummings' i six nonlectures

Several years ago I worked with Sylvia Plath's copy of Ayn Rand's novel The Foutainhead . In a blog post about that experience, I made a table listing the page numbers on which she made annotations and comments. Too little attention has been paid to Plath's annotations. I had in mind when I did the aforementioned blog post to spend more time with Plath's library but the whole Letters of Sylvia Plath project kind of took over my life. Part of the thrill of The Fountainhead was that it was, and still is, held privately so it was a privilege to both work with it and present the information to you. However, for this blog post, I chose to do a book held by Smith College: e.e. cummings i six nonlectures (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1954). Plath was given this copy in 1955 by her Smith classmater Sue Weller with the inscription: for Syl, in memory of a delightfully, indolent spring vacation. Sue– 1955 I should remind you that I reassembled, via Libr

Sylvia Plath reading her poems

On 22 February 1959, Sylvia Plath read seventeen of her poems which Stephen Fassett recorded for Harvard University. The original reel-to-reel tapes are held by the Houghton Library and were digitized back in the early 2000s. When I worked for the Woodberry Poetry Room I would relish any opportunity I had to go and see the tapes, still in their original boxes. Plath wrote the names of the poems she read on the back of the box. Beneath the last poem, "Point Shirley" she added a little flourish. And dividing the columns, she drew a little face. Fassett (presumably) even wrote along the side of the box "(Titles listed by Sylvia Plath)." The Fassett recording studio was located at 24 Chestnut Street, Beacon Hill, just around the corner from Plath's apartment at 9 Willow Street.   If you are interested in Plath's poetry recordings , please consider heading over to A celebration, this is to read more. All links accessed 12 February 1963.

Sylvia Plath's Funeral

Sylvia Plath was buried in Heptonstall on this day, 18 February 1963. Very little has been published about the funeral. It was touched upon in Jillian Becker’s Giving Up , as well as in some biographies. Warren Plath wrote a letter to his mother, Aurelia Schober Plath, two days after it, from 23 Fitzroy Road, where he and his wife were staying with Frieda and Nicholas. It is impossible to comprehend how staying there must have felt, knowing it was where his sister died just 9 days previous. In the letter, Warren wrote that Plath’s funeral was “much better as an experience than we had dared to hope, and I think even Sylvia would have found it simple and beautiful.” He mentions there was a brief service in the chapel at a funeral home in Hebden Bridge. He described the chapel as “grey with soot on the outside, but light and cheerful inside”. Present in addition to Warren and Margaret Plath and Ted Hughes were William Hughes, Walter and Alice Farrar, cousin Vicky and her husband

Sylvia Plath Collections: Boxes 3 and 4

As promised, here are the item lists for boxes 3 and 4 of the Harriet Rosenstein research files on Sylvia Plath, which I hope helps to provide addition access to the materials as listed in the collection's finding aid .  And a reminder that some folders were skipped. Box 3 Folder 1: Evelyn Page Folder 2: Robert T. Peterson Folder 3: Aurelia Plath Folder 4: Otto Plath Folder 5: Otto Plath Folder 6: Otto Plath Folder 7: Otto Plath Folder 8: Sylvia Plath articles by Folder 9: Sylvia Plath letters Folder 10: Sylvia Plath McLean Hospital record Folder 12: Pat O'Neill Pratson Folder 13: Alison Prentice Folder 14: Paul and Clarissa Roche Folder 15: Harriet Rosenstein doctoral prospectus and book proposal Box 4 Folder 1: Harriet Rosenstein draft fragments Folder 2: General correspondence Folder 3: Shorthand notes Folder 4: Jon Rosenthal Folder 5: M. L. Rosenthal Folder 6: Richard Sas

Sylvia Plath Collections: Boxes 1 and 2

Today and tomorrow I thought it might be fun to show you what the files "look" like in the Harriet Rosenstein research files on Sylvia Plath. There are 99 total folders of paper in four boxes. The finding aid is an excellent starting place to give the researcher an idea of what is in the box. But it only goes so far in what it is describing. A collection like this has importance, but not enough value to warrant an item listing in the making of its finding aid. However, having access to all the files, and the desire to be able to find materials on my computer, I have made an item list of what is in the collection. My sincere thanks to the people at Emory for their assistance in obtaining photographs of these materials and especially to Emily Banks for taking the photos. The following are boxes 1 and 2. (Please note that several folders were skipped.) Box 1 Folder 1: Alfred A. Knopf Folder 2: Al Alvarez Folder 3: Elizabeth Ames & Cyrilly Abels Folder 4: