Sylvia Plath | Literature Criticism Critical Essay by James Atlas

This literature criticism consists of approximately 8 pages of analysis & critique of Sylvia Plath.
This section contains 2,150 words
(approx. 8 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Sylvia Plath and the Nature of Biography

Critical Essay by James Atlas

SOURCE: "The Biographer and the Murderer," in The New York Times Magazine, December 12, 1993, pp. 74-5.

[Atlas is an American poet, biographer, and critic. At the time this article was published, he was at work on a biography of Saul Bellow. In the following essay, he discusses the changing nature of biography, contending that current books, including The Silent Woman, tend to revel more in scandalous details than serious scholarship.]

Biography is getting bad press these days. A "lowly trade," Martin Amis pronounced it, reviewing Andrew Motion's biography of Philip Larkin. "Something horrid has recently befallen the craft of biography," lamented Arthur M. Schlesinger Jr. in The New Republic, deploring the glut of gossipy new lives on the market. Joyce Carol Oates even coined a word to describe the genre: pathography...

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This section contains 2,150 words
(approx. 8 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Sylvia Plath and the Nature of Biography