Olivia: An Oft-Overlooked Lesbian Novel
It took some fifteen years to bring Dorothy Strachey Bussy’s remarkable roman à clef to print, thanks to André Gide’s lukewarm reception.
Marie Bashkirtseff’s Diary
The art student died young, but her diary lived on to inspire future writers, including Anaïs Nin, Katherine Mansfield, and Mary MacLane.
American Immigrant Literature Gets an Update
Despite the historical gulf between canonical and recent immigrant writing, one constant is the mark that new immigrant artists leave on US literature.
Isaac Babel’s Red Cavalry
Set during the Polish-Soviet War of 1919–1920, Babel’s novel captured the indiscriminate violence and injustice of warfare.
Michael Gold: Red Scare Victim
The author of Jews Without Money, a proletarian lit best-seller, was ostracized for his Communism and derided for his prose. Today he is all but forgotten.
Edna Ferber Revisited
The first-generation Jewish American novelist exposed entrenched prejudices of her day. A reissue of The Girls introduces her wit to new readers.
Edgar Allan Poe (Sort of) Wrote a Book About Seashells
The American writer was an enthusiast of the sciences, which may explain his decision to “adapt” a text about seashells for publication under his own name.
June Miller: More Than An Erotic Muse?
Anaïs Nin and Henry Miller, two writers in search of sexual and literary inspiration, modeled their most seductive characters on June Mansfield Miller.
John Donne’s Listicle For the Well-Prepped Courtier
“The Courtier’s Library” is a list of books every courtier should know about, a cheat sheet for name-dropping in society. The trouble? Its books are imaginary.
Better known by the pen name Mourning Dove, Quintasket was a leader and activist who used her position as a public intellectual to fight for Colville rights.