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Seduction and Betrayal

Elizabeth Hardwick

Elizabeth Hardwick’s iconic essay collection Seduction and Betrayal is a radical portrait of women and literature, reissued with a new introduction by Deborah Levy.

1 in stock

£8.99
Format
Paperback
ISBN
9780571347001
Date Published
04.07.2019
Delivery
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Summary

ONE OF THE WHITE REVIEW’S BEST BOOKS OF 2019

Elizabeth Hardwick’s iconic essay collection Seduction and Betrayal is a radical portrait of women and literature, reissued
with a new introduction by Deborah Levy.

‘Hardwick’s sentences are burned in my brain.’ – Susan Sontag


Sidelined. Betrayed. Killed off. Elizabeth Hardwick dissects the history of women and literature.

In her most virtuoso work of criticism, she explores the lives of the Brontës, Woolf, Eliot and Plath; the fate of literary wives such as Zelda Fitzgerald and Jane Carlyle; and the destinies of fictional heroines from Richardson’s Clarissa to Ibsen’s Nora. With fierce empathy and biting wit, Hardwick mines their childhoods, families, and personalities to probe the costs of sex, love, and marriage. Shattering the barrier between writing and life, she asks who is the seducer and who the seduced; who the victim and who the victor.

First published in 1974, yet both urgently timely and timeless, Seduction and Betrayal explodes the conventions of the essay: and the result is nothing less than a reckoning.

Critic Reviews

A hard, glinting, sophisticated, switched on female intelligence ... Subversively beautiful ... Hardwick shocks with the truth: it runs like blood through her every sentence ... The gift of her attention is enough to make anyone want to write magnificently.

Deborah Levy
Critic Reviews

Only Virginia Woolf has created comparable likenesses … A gifted miniaturist biographer … Eloquent, erudite, chatty, and often very witty.

Joyce Carol Oates
Critic Reviews

A rich, moving historical pageant. Literature’s women - the creators and the created - pass before us on stage sets of art, romance, sex, and death.

Margo Jefferson
Critic Reviews

Her essays never fail to dazzle with their lightning-bolt insights and cool clarity ... Criminally underappreciated ... She shows us the many ways of being a human, if we could only look harder and love more deeply all that we’re seeing.

Lauren Groff
Critic Reviews

Her perception of what it means to be a woman and a writer seems in every way authentic, revelatory, entirely original and yet acutely recognizable.

Joan Didion
Critic Reviews

You felt that she wrote for you ... The best prose writer in America.

Derek Walcott
ElizabethHardwick

Elizabeth Hardwick (1916-2007) was one of the greatest intellectuals of her time. A co-founder of The New York Review of Books, she authored three novels, a biography of Herman Melville, and four collections of essays, as well as contributing more than a hundred pieces to American publications. She was married to the poet Robert Lowell from 1949 to 1972.

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ElizabethHardwick