The Voice of the Poet: Sylvia Plath

The Voice of the Poet: Sylvia Plath

by Sylvia Plath
     
 
Featuring the most distinquished twentieth-century American poets reading from their own work. A first in audiobook publishing—a series that uses the written word to enhance the listening experience—poetry to be read as well as heard. Each audiobook includes rare archival recordings on cassette and a book with the text of the poetry, a bibliography, and a

Overview

Featuring the most distinquished twentieth-century American poets reading from their own work. A first in audiobook publishing—a series that uses the written word to enhance the listening experience—poetry to be read as well as heard. Each audiobook includes rare archival recordings on cassette and a book with the text of the poetry, a bibliography, and a commentary by J. D. McClatchy, the poet and critic, who is the editor of The Yale Review.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
This is part of a handsomely packaged new series, in which archival recordings of noted poets reading from their works are paired with accompanying text volumes. The poems are published for cross-reference, along with historical photographs and introductory biographical essays by J.D. McClatchy, editor of The Yale Review. (Other poets included in the launch are W.H. Auden and James Merrill.) The Boston-born Plath (1932-1963) reads her works in an incisive and forthright manner, carefully enunciating her words to give a strong sense of structured internal rhythms. Largely written while married to the British poet Ted Hughes in the years just before her suicide, these works dwell--presciently--on themes of marriage and death. In "November Graveyard," she speaks of "...the bare room, the blank, untenanted air." Read aloud, the rawness of Plath's vision comes across especially immediate and acute. Of interest to scholars and general-audience Plath fans alike. (June) Copyright 1999 Cahners Business Information.
Library Journal
In a brilliant audio packaging concept, these three tapes initiate an "audio and book" series. The poets (all now deceased) read from their work, and there is a 64-page book presenting an introductory biographical and critical overview by editor J.D. McClatchy, plus text of the poems, photos, and illuminating fragments from letters. Plath's two readings, as the editor notes, show a dramatic tonal difference, from the flat recitation of early poems to the stark, cutting, forceful severity of her voice as she moves through the poems that would be collected posthumously as Ariel. The readings by Merrill and Auden are culled from various sources, especially important in Merrill's case, where McClatchy has sought out the more accessible of the poet's often complex poems. Surprisingly, Auden's reading is the least pleasurable, perhaps because there are many other recordings of him reading his own work. These tapes, and hopefully others to follow in this series, are a perfect means of introducing interested but uncommitted readers and listeners to poetry. Essential for all libraries.--Rochelle Ratner, formerly with "Soho Weekly News," New York Copyright 1999 Cahners Business Information.
School Library Journal
Gr 7 Up-Read by author. Copyright 1999 Cahners Business Information.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780375405990
Publisher:
Random House Audio Publishing Group
Publication date:
04/01/1999
Series:
Voice of the Poet Series
Edition description:
Abridged
Pages:
64
Product dimensions:
4.52(w) x 7.20(h) x 1.15(d)

Meet the Author

Sylvia Plath was born in 1932 in Boston, and her work reflected both her New England heritage and the landscape of England where she later lived with her husband, the poet Ted Hughes. What Hughes called "her crackling verbal energy" is apparent in her poems' biting precision of word and image. Gestures in her life of defiance and acstasy, love or despair, are re-imagined in brilliant archtypal patterns. In the year before her suicide, she was writing the poems that secured her fame--poems about her children and her failed marriage, about death and her imagination. Robert Lowell once called them her "appalling and triumphant fulfillment."

Brief Biography

Date of Birth:
October 27, 1932
Date of Death:
February 11, 1963
Place of Birth:
Boston, Massachusetts
Place of Death:
London, England
Education:
B.A., Smith College, 1955; Fulbright Scholar, Cambridge University

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