Three Lives by Gertrude Stein AND A Literature of Their Own: British Women Novelists from Bronte to Lessing by Elaine Showalter
The literary theories of American expatriate Gertrude Stein (1874–1946) strongly influenced a generation of young American writers (notably Hemingway), and her ideas about writing still provoke and stimulate.
Although much of her own work embodies innovative experimentation with language and sound, the present volume is fairly conventional in style and quite accessible. Regarded by some critics as a minor masterpiece, Three Lives was Stein's first published book. In it she tells the stories of three working class women — Anna, a conscientious but rigid serving woman; Melanctha, a worldly-wise and sensitive black girl; and Lena, a gentle but feeble-minded maid.
Although these are relatively ordinary women, in Stein's hands their lives and minds take on extraordinary interest. Told in clear, carefully crafted prose, these stories are not only memorable works in themselves but an excellent entree to Stein's later work.
A Literature of Their Own:
Readers of this new, enlarged edition of the classic feminist study of British women novelists will find themselves delighted by Elaine Showalter's astute and acerbic critical intelligence. Showalter is one of the few scholars who can make her readers rush to their bookshelves to refute her point, or simply to experience again Jane Eyre, The Mill on the Floss, or the bitterly illuminating stories of Katherine Mansfield. Her chief innovation is to place the works of famous women writers beside those of the minor or forgotten, building a continuity of influence and inspiration as well as a more complete picture of the social conditions in which women's books have been produced. She has added a new introduction recounting, with justifiable pleasure, how daring and controversial her study seemed when it first appeared in 1977 (and how many enemies it made her). In an afterword, she touches on more recent developments in the women's novel in Britain, including the influence of the dazzling Angela Carter.
- two feminist books, sold as a set
- both paperbacks
- both excellent condition