Other books bySylvia Plath
Sylvia Plath: Drawings
In 1956 Sylvia Plath wrote to her mother, Aurelia, 'I feel I'm developing a kind of primitive style of my own which I am very fond of. Wait 'til you see . . . ' Throughout her life Plath cited art as her deepest source of inspiration; yet while her writing is celebrated around the world, her drawings are little known. This publication brings together drawings from 1955 to 1957, the period she spent on a Fulbright fellowship at Newnham College, Cambridge. During this time she met and married in secret the poet Ted Hughes, travelling with him on honeymoon to Paris and Spain before their return to the US in June 1957. Plath's drawings in pen and ink are exquisitely observed moments from this period in her life, and include among their subjects Parisian rooftops, trees, churches and a portrait of Ted Hughes. The collection sheds light on these key years in Plath's life and includes letters and a diary entry about her art, as well as an illuminating introduction by her daughter, Frieda Hughes.
Johnny Panic and the Bible of Dreams
and other prose writings
From her mid-teens Sylvia Plath wrote stories, at first easily and successfully, but then with increasing difficulty as the demands of her real vision complicated her growing ambition to make a career as a conventional storywriter. When the first edition of Johnny Panic and the Bible of Dreams appeared, Margaret Walters said of it in the Guardian, 'the book does offer . . . new insight into her development as a writer, suggesting how even her mistakes and dead ends contributed to the formation of an original and pathfinding talent'. This second edition contains the thirteen stories included in the first edition together with five pieces of her journalism, as well as a few fragments from her journal; and a further nine stories selected from the Indiana archive.
The Bell Jar
The Bell Jar is Sylvia Plath's only novel. Renowned for its intensity and outstandingly vivid prose, it broke existing boundaries between fiction and reality and helped to make Plath an enduring feminist icon. It was published under a pseudonym a few weeks before the author's suicide. 'It is a fine novel, as bitter and remorseless as her last poems . . . The world in which the events of the novel take place is a world bounded by the Cold War on one side and the sexual war on the other . . . This novel is not political nor historical in any narrow sense, but in looking at the madness of the world and the world of madness it forces us to consider the great question posed by all truly realistic fiction: What is reality and how can it be confronted? . . . Esther Greenwood's account of her year in the bell jar is as clear and readable as it is witty and disturbing.' New York Times Book Review
The Journals of Sylvia Plath
Sylvia Plath began keeping a diary as a young child. By the time she was at Smith College, when this book begins, she had settled into a nearly daily routine with her journal, which was also a sourcebook for her writing. Plath once called her journal her “Sargasso,” her repository of imagination, “a litany of dreams, directives, and imperatives,” and in fact these pages contain the germs of most of her work. Plath’s ambitions as a writer were urgent and ultimately all-consuming, requiring of her a heat, a fantastic chaos, even a violence that burned straight through her. The intensity of this struggle is rendered in her journal with an unsparing clarity, revealing both the frequent desperation of her situation and the bravery with which she faced down her demons. Written in electrifying prose, The Journals of Sylvia Plath provide unique insight, and are essential reading for all those who have been moved and fascinated by Plath’s life and work.