Annual Bibliography of Works about Life Writing, 1999-2000

By Wachter, Phyllis E. | Biography, Fall 2000 | Go to article overview

Annual Bibliography of Works about Life Writing, 1999-2000


Wachter, Phyllis E., Biography


PSYCHOBIOGRAPHY BIBLIOGRAPHER WILLIAM TODD SCHULTZ

I occasionally experience myself as a cluster of flowing currents. I prefer this to the idea of a solid self the identity to which so many attach so much significance. These currents, like the themes of one's life, flow along during the waking hours, and at their best, they require no reconciling, no harmonizing.

Edward Said

The past has no beginnings and endings, but the stories we tell about it must and do. Our plots depend on where we choose to start and stop the tale. This commentary is about my own desire to understand how identities first emerge and then change over time.

--Jacquelyn Dowd Hall (writing on Katharine Du Pre Lumpkin)

The personal is political; the political is personal.

--Feminist credo

This year's annotated list of books, collections, annuals, special issues, articles, essays, and dissertations about life writing covers the period 1999 to Fall 2000.

BOOKS

Adams, Timothy Dow. Light Writing & Life Writing: Photography in Auto biography. Chapel Hill: U of North Carolina P, 2000.

Explores the ways in which text and image can interact with and reflect on one another.[Reviewed in Biography 23.3 (Summer 2000).] Agamben, Giorgio. Remnants of Auschwitz: The Witness and the Archive. Cambridge: MIT Press, 2000.

Addresses the philosophical nature of testimony, and ethical questions raised by the literature of Auschwitz survivors.

Allen, James Smith. Poignant Relations: Three Modern French Women. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins UP, 2000.

Through the lives and writings of Marie-Sophie Leroyer, Genevieve Breton-Vaudoyer, and Celine Renooz-Muro, traces the construction of a stable discursive self and the origins of feminist consciousness in nineteenth-century France.

Annan, Noel. The Dons: Mentors, Eccentrics, and Geniuses. Chicago: U of Chicago P, 2000.

A group history of British higher education through stories of the famous teachers of Oxford and Cambridge.

Ashley, Kathleen, and Pamela Sheingorn. Writing Faith: Text, Sign, and History in the Miracles of Sainte Foy. Chicago: U of Chicago P, 1999.

Shows that the miracle stories of Sainte Foy are rhetorical constructions shaped by their authors' agendas.

Atkins, Annette. We Grew Up Together: Brothers and Sisters in Nineteenth-Century America. Champaign: U of Illinois P, 2000.

Through letters between brothers and sisters written between 1840 and 1920, reveals the inner workings of ten nineteenth-century families, complicating traditional accounts of American family life.

Backscheider, Paula R. Reflections on Biography. Oxford: Oxford UP, 1999.

Using prize-winning books as her sample, Backscheider traces the biographer's roles as "explorer, hypothesizer, compiler, researcher, selector, and writer." [Reviewed in this issue.]

Barroll, Leeds. Anna of Denmark, Queen of England: A Cultural Biography Philadelphia: U of Pennsylvania P, 2000.

A cultural biography of Anna of Denmark that argues for an influential and distinctive role for the queen consort in early modern Europe.

Barros, Carolyn A., and Johanna M. Smith, eds. Life-Writings by British Women, 1660-1815: An Anthology. Boston: Northeastern UP, 1999.

Thirty annotated selections suggest the range of women's life writing in Britain during the long eighteenth century--memoirs (individual, familial, and scandalous), travel narratives, letters, appeals for funds, conversion testimonies, etc.-with an introduction exploring their material and generic conditions of production, and notes placing each selection in its historical, cultural, and social context.

Black, Stephen A. Eugene O'Neill: Beyond Mourning and Tragedy. New Haven: Yale UP, 1999.

Literary psychobiography of O'Neill's life, written by a professor of English and trained psychoanalyst. …

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