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Telling women's lives : the new biography Linda Wagner-Martin.

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Book's title: Telling women's lives : the new biography Linda Wagner-Martin.
Library of Congress Control Number: 93042403
International Standard Book Number (ISBN):0813520924
System Control Number:(OCoLC)29389777
System Control Number:(OCoLC)ocm29389777
System Control Number:(NNC)1494306
Cataloging Source:DLC, DLC NNC
Library of Congress Call Number:CT22 .W34 1994
Dewey Decimal Classification Number:808/.06692 20
Personal Name:Wagner-Martin, Linda.
Publication, Distribution, etc.:New Brunswick, N.J. . Rutgers University Press, (c)1994.
Physical Description:xiii, 201 p., [8] p. of plates : ill. ;, 24 cm.
Bibliography, etc. Note:Includes bibliographical references and index.
Formatted Contents Note:1. Biography: The Old and the New
2. Telling Women's Lives. Controversial Material. Ethical Issues. Issues of Sentiment. Avoiding Stereotypical Responses
3. The Trap of the Stereotype
4. Relinquishing Stereotypes. Versions of the George Eliot Biography. The Stories of Emily Bronte
5. The Biographer's Problem: Women as Wives. The Search for Nora Joyce. The Several Hadley Hemingway Stories. The Presidential Wife Saga
6. A Woman's Self: Wives and Writers. The Lindbergh Legends. Women's Stories of the Exotic
7. The Power of Naming. Lillian Hellman's Memoirs. Stein, Woolf, and Parody. Critical Reaction
8. Listening to Women's Stories
9. Writing about Mothers. Absent Mothers. Famous Mothers. Scandalous Mothers
10. Taking Control of Story: Women's Voices. The Kate Chopin Biographies. The Edith Wharton Biographies. A Husband's (or Brother's) Control
11. Families of Women. Biographies of Women in Groups. Biographies of Friends and Foremothers. The Marginalized Subject and Readers.
Formatted Contents Note:The Biographer's Need to Affirm
12. The Best of Them. Milford's Zelda. Thurman's Dinesen. Fitch's Bookshop Biography. Howard's Mead. A Pulitzer Winner. Bair's de Beauvoir. Davis's Nella Larsen
13. Popular Biography
14. Revisionist Biographies of Women. Biography: Moving toward Fiction? Fiction: Moving toward Biography? Further Definitions.
Summary, etc.:Placing herself in the avid reader's chair, Linda Wagner-Martin writes about women's biography from George Eliot and Virginia Woolf to Eleanor Roosevelt and Margaret Mead, and even to Cher and Elizabeth Taylor. Along the way, she looks at dozens of other life stories, probing at the differences between biographies of men and women, prevailing stereotypes about women's lives and roles, questions about what is public and private, and the hazy margins between autobiography, biography, and other genres.
Summary, etc.:In quick-paced and wide-ranging discussions, she looks at issues of authorial stance (who controls the narrative? who chooses which story to tell?), voice (is this story told in the traditional objective tone? and if it is, what effect does that telling have on our reading?), and the politics of publishing (why aren't more books about women's lives published? and when they are, what happens to their advertising budgets?). She discusses the problems of writing biography of achieving women who were also wives (how does the biographer balance the two?), of daughters who attempt to write about their mothers, and of husbands trying to portray their wives.
Summary, etc.:Amid the current controversy over biography as partial invention, she weighs the possibilities of ever achieving a true depiction of a life and outlines the responsibility of the biographer and the art of biographical writing. As an accomplished biographer herself, Wagner-Martin weaves comments about her experiences writing about Sylvia Plath, Ellen Glasgow, John Dos Passos, and, most recently, Gertrude Stein throughout her discussion. Her point of view is always illuminating, lively, and readable.
Summary, etc.:Telling Women's Lives is the first overview of the writing and the history of biographies about women. It is a significant contribution to the reassessment of the work of the hundreds of women writers who have made a difference in our conception of what women's stories - and women's lives - have been, and are becoming. The book is a must-read for anyone who loves reading biographies, particularly biographies of women.
Rubrics: Biography as a literary form
Women
Biography
Methodology

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