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The Lydia Steptoe Stories

Djuna Barnes

Faber 90th Stories brings together some of our finest short stories, past, present and future.

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Format
Ebook
ISBN
9780571354672
Date Published
03.01.2019
Delivery
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Summary

Faber Stories, a landmark series of individual volumes, presents masters of the short story form at work in a range of genres and styles.

‘I have quite changed my mind. I am going to run away and become a boy.’

In these three stories, written by Djuna Barnes under the pseudonym Lydia Steptoe, three characters find themselves on the brink of a sexual awakening – accompanied by guns, whips, and worldly innuendo.

A fourteen-year-old girl plans to become ‘a virago’, until her mother intercepts her first tryst by dressing up as her male lover. A boy of the same age is lured into the forest by his father’s mistress. A woman of forty falls in love and longs to kill herself, so unbearable is the return of the youth she thought she wanted. ‘Alice’, she tells herself, ‘be a man.’

Barnes makes gender and desire seem slippery and joyful – and makes the fictional Lydia Steptoe seem like a writer for our time.

DjunaBarnes

Djuna Barnes was born in 1892 in Cornwall-on-Hudson in New York State. In 1912 she enrolled as a student at Pratt Institute and then at the Art Students’ League, and while she was there she started to work as a reporter and illustrator for the Brooklyn Eagle. In 1921 she moved to Paris, where she lived for almost twenty years…

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DjunaBarnes