This is the first study devoted to Sylvia Plath's fiction. Plath wrote fiction throughout her life, in a wide variety of genres, including women's magazine romances, New Yorker stories, comedy, social criticism, autobiography, teenage fiction and science fiction. She wrote novels before and after The Bell Jar. Discussing all these novels and stories, and based on research in the three major archives of her work, this book is the complete study of Plath's fiction. The author analyses her influences as a fiction writer, the relationships between her poetry and fiction, the political views she expresses in her fiction, and devotes two chapters to the central concern of her novels and stories, the roles of women in contemporary society.
Luke Ferretter is Assistant Professor of Twentieth-Century British and American Literature at Baylor University. He is the author of two books on critical theory, and of several articles on twentieth century literature and theory, including essays on Sylvia Plath, D.H. Lawrence, Jacques Derrida and Julia Kristeva. He serves on the editorial board of the journal Plath Profiles.
List of Abbreviations; Acknowledgements; Introduction; Short Stories; Novels; 1. Literary Contexts; Virginia Woolf; The New Yorker; Women's Magazine Fiction; Women's Madness Narratives; Ted Hughes; 2. Plath's Poetry and Fiction; Smith, 1954-55; Cambridge, 1956-57; Falcon Yard, 1957-58; Boston and Yaddo, 1958-59; The Bell Jar, 1961; Double Exposure, 1962-63; 3. The Politics of Plath's Fiction; Political Development; Race Stories; Cold War Stories; Crazy About the Rosenbergs; 'I Could Love a Russian Boy'; Strange Love; Growing Up in World War II; 4. Gender and Society in The Bell Jar; Sex; Medicine; Psychiatry; Beauty; Marriage; 'Femininity'; 5. Gender and Society in Plath's Short Stories; Plath's Women's Magazine Fiction; Home Is Where the Heart Is; Feminine Identities; Violence and Patriarchy; Notes; Bibliography; Index.