Seduction: A Portrait of Anais Nin

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9781931223027: Seduction: A Portrait of Anais Nin

Book by Margot Beth Duxler

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Duxler was a 20-year-old literature student in 1968 when she serendipitously met 65-year-old feminist icon Ana‹s Nin. Having read the writer's published diaries, she was simultaneously starstruck and eager to assume the role of acolyte. The relationship lasted until Nin's death in 1977. At that point, Duxler was astonished to read Nin's unedited writing and discover that the feminist was not the independent powerhouse she thought she knew but a needy polygamist who had connived her way into the lives of others. This startling revelation and betrayal led Duxler, by then a psychology student, to begin a psychoanalytic inquiry into Nin's life. Here, Duxler scrupulously scrutinizes the writer's compulsive sexuality including a period of consensual father-daughter incest when Nin was an adult and her lifelong need for subterfuge. While many of the revelations are astonishing, the narrative is often sketchy and will leave readers wanting to know more about Duxler's relationship with Nin as well as Nin's relationships with the men she juggled. Perhaps interviews with people who knew the elusive author would have made Seduction feel more complete. As it is, the book is tempting, but like foreplay that goes nowhere, it is ultimately frustrating. Eleanor J. Bader, Brooklyn, New York City
Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information, Inc.

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Margot Beth Duxler
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