Norton Book of Women's Lives

Overview

"This remarkable and wide-ranging collection, full of surprises, should encourage any woman who is trying to survive in a man's world, and enlighten any man who sincerely wants to understand contemporary women." —Alison Lurie
"This magnificent, handsome, handful of an anthology . . ."* includes sixty-one substantial selections from the twentieth-century literature of women's lives: autobiographies, journals, and memoirs. "As varied in humanity as in geography,"** the women whose life stories are collected here ...

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Overview

"This remarkable and wide-ranging collection, full of surprises, should encourage any woman who is trying to survive in a man's world, and enlighten any man who sincerely wants to understand contemporary women." —Alison Lurie
"This magnificent, handsome, handful of an anthology . . ."* includes sixty-one substantial selections from the twentieth-century literature of women's lives: autobiographies, journals, and memoirs. "As varied in humanity as in geography,"** the women whose life stories are collected here include the famous—Maya Angelou, Maxine Hong Kingston, Anne Frank, Virginia Woolf—and the surprising—Emma Mashinini, a black South African labor organizer; Onnie Lee Logan, an Alabama "granny" midwife; Sara Suleri, an expatriate in America who reflects hilariously on the language of food in her native Pakistan.
"Destined to become a classic,"‡ this treasury of women's lives, brimming with intelligence, passion, wit, and determination, is a celebration of life itself.
*Hungry Mind Review
**Washington Post Book World
‡Library Journal

This anthology includes 61 selections from the 20th-century literature of women's lives: autobiographies, journals, and memoirs. The women whose life stories are collected here range from Maya Angelou and Anne Frank to Onnie Lee Logan, an Alabama midwife, and Emma Mashinini, a South African labor organizer.

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Editorial Reviews

Elle
“This is a book to be marooned with on a desert island. . . . A nourishing anthology . . . that covers an exhilarating range of experience. ”
Elle
“This is a book to be marooned with on a desert island. . . . A nourishing anthology . . . that covers an exhilarating range of experience. ”
Library Journal
Because of the breadth and richness of these 61 selections, which demonstrate the evolution of women's autobiographical writing, this anthology is destined to become a classic. Works of the famous, i.e., Helen Keller and Anne Morrow Lindbergh, are interspersed with those not publicly known. There are landmark passages from Anne Frank, Mary McCarthy, and Anais Nin, women whose names are synonymous with the diary form. Many passages represent the experiences of political activists like Bernadette Devlin. The collection is multicultural in scope, ranging, for example, from the poetry of Maya Angelou in the United States to the oral autobiography of Nisa, an African tribal member. The emphasis is upon experience rather than literary quality, resulting in the inclusion of passages not readily available elsewhere. The selections are alphabetically arranged, and the introductory material about each author helpfully refers the reader to related passages. Recommended for public and academic library collections.-- Mary Ellen Beck, Troy P.L., N.Y.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780393312904
  • Publisher: Norton, W. W. & Company, Inc.
  • Publication date: 4/28/1995
  • Pages: 832
  • Sales rank: 930,344
  • Product dimensions: 5.50 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 1.40 (d)

Meet the Author

Phyllis Rose is the author of Parallel Lives: Five Victorian Marriages and other noted works of biography and criticism. She is professor of English at Wesleyan University in Middletown, Connecticut.

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Table of Contents

Introduction 11
From I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings 41
From The Prime of Life 53
From The Italics Are Mine 68
From Testament of Youth 78
From A Life of Her Own 87
From Life and Death in Shanghai 109
From Silent Dancing 129
From My Apprenticeships 144
From The Road from Coornin 153
From Notes 173
From The Price of My Soul 187
From The White Album 197
From An American Childhood 210
From Out of Africa 219
From The War 232
From As They Were 245
From An Angel at My Table 253
From Diary 275
From Journey into the Whirlwind 299
From Family Sayings 318
From Fierce Attachments 332
From Times and Places 344
From When Heaven and Earth Changed Places 360
From Pentimento 376
From Lost in Translation 387
From Lady Sings the Blues 402
From Mules and Men 406
From Diary 422
From Minor Characters 431
From The Story of My Life 444
From The Woman Warrior 452
From Totto-Chan 470
From Gift from the Sea 477
From Motherwit 483
From Zami: A New Seeing of My Name 496
From West with the Night 518
From Strikes Have Followed Me All My Life 530
From Memories of a Catholic Girlhood 539
From Blackberry Winter 555
From The Loony-Bin Trip 569
From Daughters and Rebels 576
From Coming of Age in Mississippi 591
From Memoir of a Modernist's Daughter 605
From Diary 615
From A Daughter of Han 630
From Nisa: The Life and Words of a !Kung Woman 636
From Art & Ardor 657
From Diary 664
From Gifts of Passage 671
From Cross Creek 685
From Confession 693
From The Measure of My Days 703
From Bronx Primitive 707
From Landscape for a Good Woman 715
From The Autobiography of Alice B. Toklas 725
From Meatless Days 730
From Leftover Life to Kill 743
From Diary 759
From Daybook 774
From Berlin Diaries 785
From Diary 795
Acknowledgments 811
Copyright Notices 813
Index 817
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