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Stevie Smith: A Biography - Frances Spalding

W. W. Norton & Co., 1989, Hardback in Dust Wrapper.
Condition: Very Good — in Very Good Dust Wrapper. Leans slightly. Small address sticker to the first blank.

First U.S. Edition. Illustrated with black and white photographs. From the cover: “Born in Hull. But moved to London at the age of 3 and has lived in the same house ever since, wrote Stevie Smith when asked by an editor for a biographical note. The lack of external events in her life is to many people the best-known thing about her. Yet she was far from reclusive, as this brilliant new biography shows, and was actively involved in the social as well as intellectual life of literary London, with interruptions, from the early 1930s until her death in 1971.

Frances Spalding reveals and explores the intimate relationship between the course of Stevie Smith’s life and the evolution of her art, into which she has assimilated, not simply the events and emotions of her private life, but influences on her imagination of her wide and varied reading. The ambivalence of these influences on both form and content has inhibited serious discussion of her work, and it is the strength of this book that in its sensitive unravelling of that ambivalence it enables Stevie Smiths oeuvre to be seen as a whole. While showing that the life of the mind can be a valid subject for biography, it also shows that the external events of the poet’s life do in fact provide the subject of an absorbing and entertaining narrative.”


Size: 9½" x 6¼". Blue boards with Orange titling to the Spine. [XVIII] 331 pages.
£8.50