Painted Shadow: The Life of Vivienne Eliot, First Wife of T. S. Eliot

Seymour-Jones, Carole

ISBN 10: 0385499930 / ISBN 13: 9780385499934
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Synopsis: By the time Vivienne Eliot was committed to an asylum for what would be the final nine years of her life, she had been abandoned by her husband T.S. Eliot and shunned by literary London. Yet Vivienne was neither insane nor insignificant. She generously collaborated in her husband’s literary efforts, taking dictation, editing his drafts, and writing articles for his magazine, Criterion. Her distinctive voice can be heard in his poetry. And paradoxically, it was the unhappiness of the Eliots’ marriage that inspired some of the poet’s most distinguished work, from The Family Reunion to The Waste Land. This first biography ever written about Vivienne draws on hundreds of previously unpublished papers, journals and letters to portray a spontaneous, loving, but fragile woman who had an important influence on her husband’s work, as well as a great poet whose behavior was hampered by psychological and sexual impulses he could not fully acknowledge.
Intriguing and provocative, Painted Shadow gracefully rescues Vivienne Eliot from undeserved obscurity, and is indispensable for anyone wishing to understand T.S. Eliot, Vivienne, or the world in which they traveled.

From the Back Cover: “Fascinating and controversial.” –The Washington Post

“Fascinating and hugely successful” –Sunday Times (London)

“A detailed, in-depth look at an extraordinary and complex marriage.” –The Houston Chronicle

“This work makes a definite contribution to our understanding of Eliot.” –Library Journal

“Superbly well-researched and extremely distressing. . . . A moving, powerful, and sympathetic biography of a talented, frail woman who deserves to rescued from the obscurity to which she was condemned.” –The Spectator (UK)

“If you want to know how ‘The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock’ came to be penned, this homey little volume provides as good an interpretation of sexual dynamics as any. Highly recommended to all literature lovers.” –The Tampa Tribune

“Brilliant, deeply researched, utterly compelling. . . . [A] magnificent study.” –The Guardian (UK)

“Knowledgeable. . . Fair and subtle.” –The Daily Telegraph (UK)

“ A nuanced portrait of an independent spirit coming unhinged. . . . A chronicle of a fine mind–highly unstable but not necessarily insane.” –Publishers Weekly

“Unsettling. . . . Gives us some intriguing ways of looking at Eliot and his work.” –San Jose Mercury News

“[Seymour-Jones’s] portrait of Vivienne is fair, sympathetic, and well-supported, making her a far more real and vivid figure than in most studies of Eliot.” –Chicago Tribune

“Gripping . . . immaculately researched. . . . Sensational.” –The Observer (UK)

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Title: Painted Shadow: The Life of Vivienne Eliot, ...
Binding: Paperback
Book Condition: Good

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