The extent to which these new biographical tools for the unlocking of personality have been employed and the results of their use have varied greatly. On the one hand, some biographers have deployed upon their pages the apparatus of psychological revelation—analysis of behaviour symbols, interpretation based on the oedipus complex, detection of Jungian archetypal patterns of behaviour, and the like. Other biographers, usually the authors of scholarly large-scale lives, have continued to ignore the psychological method; while still others, though avoiding explicit psychological analysis and terminology, have nonetheless presented aspects of their subjects behaviours in such a way as to suggest psychological interpretations. In general, the movement, since world War i, has been toward a discreet use of the psychological method, from Katherine Anthony s Margaret Fuller (1920) and Joseph wood Krutch s study of Edgar Allan poe (1926 which enthusiastically embrace such techniques, through Erik erikson. The science of psychology has also begun to affect the biographers very approach to his subject: a number of 20th-century authors seek to explore their own involvement with the person they are writing about before embarking upon the life itself. Ethical The biographer, particularly the biographer of a contemporary, is often confronted with an ethical problem: how much of the truth, as he has been able to ascertain it, should be printed?
Crusade for Justice: The autobiography of Ida
Frank Friedel, for example, in creating a biography of the. Roosevelt, had to wrestle with something like 40 tons of paper. But finally, when writing the life of any person, whether long or recently dead, the biographers chief responsibility is vigorously to test the authenticity of the collected materials by whatever rules and techniques are available. When the subject of a biography is still alive and a contributor to the work, the biographers task is to examine the subjects perspective against multiple, even contradictory sources. Psychological Assembling a string of facts in chronological order does not constitute the life of a person; it only gives an outline of events. The biographer therefore seeks to elicit from his materials the motives for his subjects actions and to discover the shape of his personality. The biographer who has known his subject in life enjoys the advantage of his own direct impressions, often fortified by what the subject has himself revealed in conversations, and of his having lived in the same era (thus avoiding the pitfalls in depicting distant centuries). But on the debit side, such a biographers view is coloured by the emotional factor essay almost inevitably present in a living association. Conversely, the biographer who knows his subject only from written evidence, and perhaps from the report of witnesses, lacks the insight generated by a personal relationship but can generally command a greater objectivity in his effort to probe his subjects inner life. Biographers of the 20th century have had at their disposal the psychological theories and practice of Sigmund Freud and of his followers and rivals.
Life of Samuel Johnson. (1791) that he succeeded, without inventing matter or deceiving the offer reader, in giving the sense of a life progressively unfolding. Another masterpiece of reconstruction in the face of little evidence is,. Symons biography of the English author and eccentric, frederick william Rolfe, the quest for Corvo (1934). A further difficulty is the unreliability of most collections of papers, letters, and other memorabilia edited before the 20th century. Not only did editors feel free to omit and transpose materials, but sometimes the authors of documents revised their personal writings for the benefit of posterity, often falsifying the record and presenting their biographers with a difficult situation when the originals were no longer extant. The biographer writing the life of a person recently dead is often faced with the opposite problem: an abundance of living witnesses and a plethora of materials, which include the subjects papers and letters, sometimes transcriptions of telephone conversations and conferences, as well as the.
History usually deals in generalizations about a period of time (for example, the renaissance about a group degenerative of people in time (the English colonies in North America about an institution (monasticism during the middle Ages). Biography more typically focuses upon a single human being and deals in the particulars of that persons life. Both biography and history, however, are often concerned with the past, and it is in the hunting down, evaluating, and selection of sources that they are akin. In this sense biography can be regarded as a craft rather than an art: techniques of research and general rules for testing evidence can be learned by anyone and thus need involve comparatively little of that personal commitment associated with art. A biographer in pursuit of an individual long dead is usually hampered by a lack of sources: it is often impossible to check or verify what written evidence there is; there are no witnesses to cross-examine. No method has yet been developed by which to overcome such problems. Each life, however, presents its own opportunities as well as specific difficulties to the biographer: the ingenuity with which the biographer handles gaps in the record—by providing information, for example, about the age that casts light upon the subject—has much to do with the quality. James Boswell knew comparatively little about, samuel Johnsons earlier years; it is one of the greatnesses of his.
Although biographies written in the Italian. Aspects, historical, biography is sometimes regarded as a branch of history, and earlier biographical writings—such as the 15th-century. Mémoires of the French councellor of state, philippe de commynes, or, george cavendishs 16th-century life of, thomas Cardinal Wolsey —have often been treated as historical material rather than as literary works in their own right. Some entries in ancient Chinese chronicles included biographical sketches; imbedded in the roman historian. Tacitus s, annals is the most famous biography of the emperor. Tiberius ; conversely, sir Winston Churchill s magnificent life of his ancestor. John Churchill, first duke of Marlborough, can be read as a history (written from a special point of view) of Britain and much of Europe during the. War of the Spanish Succession (170114). Yet there is general recognition today that history and biography are quite distinct forms of literature.
Nasa astronauts Homepage nasa
Thompson builds his story by taking kiš's early biographical note (entitled Birth Certificate) as its floor plan. He tracks the evolution of his ethics and aesthetics, which, for many an Eastern European writer of my generation, provided guidance in help weathering variable cataclysms. Kiš wrote his great works: a tomb for Boris davidovich ; Garden, Ashes ; Encyclopedia of the dead, as if there was something at stake in literature — because there. Thompson understands where kiš comes from — geographically, aesthetically, ethically — and has done enormous amounts of research and interviews. His writing is passionate, driven by the desire to be with kiš, to keep him around.
Around he is, even if you cant see him. The book of my lives by Aleksandar Hemon is out now (Picador). Biography, form of literature, commonly considered nonfictional, the subject of which is the life of an individual. One of the oldest forms of literary expression, it seeks to re-create in words the life of a human being—as understood from the historical or personal perspective of the author—by drawing upon all available evidence, including that retained in memory as well as written, oral. Read More on This Topic historiography: biography and psychohistory, ancient biography, especially the entire genre of hagiography, subordinated any treatment of individual character to the profuse repetition of edifying examples. They were generally about eminent men, but women could qualify as subjects by being martyred.
A gentle madness by nicolas Basbanes. . I dont want to hear any sass about this. . Sheer perfection and some of the craziest stories about book people youve ever heard. We are the gently mad, my friends. . Life is good in the asylum.
Josh, pS: Im going to sneak leo tolstoys. A confession into this post. Its a great autobiography about his struggle after losing his faith. If you liked this post, please. Subscribe to the rss feed. Recommended by Aleksander Hemon: I seldom read writers biographies; no patience for speculative analysis that can reduce someones work to a consequence of, say, fathers alcoholic neglect and Mothers not-so-latent homosexuality (or is it the other way around?). But Mark Thompsons, birth Certificate: The Story of Danilo kiš, published in 2013, deals with my favourite and one of the 20th-centurys greatest writers. My ex-wife used to admonished me saying: you only like complicated people! She was somewhat wrong about people, but I do like my writers complicated, and no one is more so than Danilo kiš: a child of a jewish father (killed in Auschwitz) and a montenegrin mother, he lived through the worst of the 20th century, even.
Famous biographies & tv shows
Ex Libris: Confessions Of a common reader by Anne fadiman, i love books about books. Ex Libris is a wonderful little (literally, this book is tiny in height and width) book about books, literature and words. . Its a love letter to writing and authors and anyone who loves this stuff. Fadiman is charming and funny and sweet and she makes me want to pick her up literature and put her in my pocket. . Thats about all I need to say about this book. . Its not quite an autobiography, but its close enough for. . you can learn a lot about someone from the the books they read and the way they talk about their reading habits. And now I cant resist one more. . The absolute best book about books of all time, now and forever,.
The most unnerving thing about this book is watching beahs feelings about violence change from revulsion to reluctance to acceptance to finally craving. . After being rescued by unicef he writes a section about needing the violence that absolutely rattled my teeth. When this child begins to regret the atrocities he has committed, it made me cry through report the last twenty pages. . beah is now an admirable man coming to terms with a situation that seems incomprehensible to most of the world. A long way gone is beautiful, awful, and unforgettable. If you read this and like it, check out my review. What Is The What? For another book with similar themes and stories.
is disturbing, hilarious, sad, and occasionally horrifying. . I dont want to give more away than that. One criticism ive heard of Burroughs is that hes more interested in fireworks than feelings. His stories are so good that I honestly dont care what his motivations are for writing and structuring his memoirs. Running With Scissors is so off the wall that I can totally believe its true. A long way gone: Memoirs Of a boy soldier by Ishmael beah, at the height of civil unrest in sierra leone, ishmael beah loses his entire way of life when it is destroyed by violence and madness. . he is eventually grabbed by a militia and indoctrinated. . soon he is a young, young soldier fighting in a war.
Maybe thats true, maybe hibernation it isnt. Either way, i have read some terrible autobiographies. For every wonderful book like. The burn journals, theres a terrible book like. Well, i wont do that. The good news is, we wouldnt know what the great books were without the terrible ones. And with that, here are three amazing autobiographies about people you will want to know betteror not.
Keeping it real and Autobiographies - dots-n-Spots
Famous First Words: Music biography 20 questions, tough, 20 Qns, thula2, jan. My 100th quiz marries the two things closest to my heart: music and books. I'll give the title, some clues, and the first line of a music biography, you pick who it's about. Careful: in the last question, i'll give the artist, you pick the title. I like these things! Since, i learned how to read yesterday, i spent the whole afternoon with these book things. . Especially these autobiographies I grabbed. You may have heard that everyone like has a story worth hearing.