Remembering Elizabeth Bishop amply succeeds in what it proposes to do: It offers an intimate view of Bishop's desperate and lonely life, as that life was observed by those who were there at the time--and those observers are a particularly perceptive and articulate lot.
This book interweaves more than 120 interviews with relatives, friends, colleagues, and students of Elizabeth Bishop (1911-1979), one of America's finest poets.
This is not a random collection of reminiscences, but--thanks to Gary Fountain's brilliant intercutting of interviews done by himself and Peter Brazeau--a genuine biography, a collage that somehow constitutes a vision of Bishop's life. It illuminates much that hitherto was obscure, and is the indispensable companion to her letters. Bishop's life, idiosyncratic, seemingly marginal, was exemplary. Her masked but intense refusal to be anything but herself reveals like an x-ray the contradictions and pleasures of twentieth-century culture. The tragedies at the root of her life were at the root of the mastery achieved by her art.
- University of Massachusetts Press
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Meet the Author
Gary Fountain is chair of the English department at Miss Porter's School. The late Peter Brazeau was author of Parts of a World: Wallace Stevens Remembered.
University of Massachusetts Press
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