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The Life and Work of Sylvia Plath



As an homage to the celebrated American writer, Sylvia Plath, her creative contemporaries united to read from and discuss her most celebrated works. Recorded in 1975, the program was primarily devoted towards the dark and feminist undertones in Plath's work. This implication was magnified by the female actresses that participated in the reading of her works. The participants included; Dorothy Dells, Sandra Lowell, Jay MacIntosh, Juliana McCarthy, Constance Pfeiffer, Judith Roberts, Joan Strauss, and Sheri Tyler.

The selected readings include; The Beehive, Stings, Fever 103, New Statue, Cut, Contusion, Daddy, Death & Co., Angelfire, The Colossus, The Applicant, A Fatherless Son, Lesbos, and excerpts from The Bell Jar.

These texts are analyzed in conjunction with what was going on in Plath's life during the time they were written. The participants discuss how the men in her life impacted her work, wherein it is noted that Plath specifically identifies her reader as male. It is argued that in an effort to reconcile her frustration with the notion of the domesticated woman, Plath used her poetry as an outlet for these anxieties. This idea, in addition to acknowledging her depression, is compared to the writings of Virginia Woolf and Anne Sexton- who also suffered from mental instability. These two writers are also singled out and related to Plath because they too took their lives amidst a culture that scrutinized their efforts to be writers, as well as mothers.
 

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