Dearest Jean: Rose Macaulays Letters to a Cousin

Hardcover | May 1, 2011

byMartin Ferguson Smith

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These candid letters from Rose Macaulay to her first cousin Jean Smith are previously unknown. Macaulay was one of the most versatile, successful, and significant women writers in the first half of the twentieth century, Smith a talented but diffident and depressive poet who was briefly an Anglican nun before converting to Roman Catholicism, a move that caused some difficulty between the two in the 1950s, when Macaulay exchanged High Church agnosticism for committed Anglicanism. Macaulay’s letters to Smith, meticulously edited by a nephew of the recipient, throw fascinating and often amusing light not only on the writer’s private life, unconventional character, and varied career, but also on the lively literary and social circles in which she moved. Although the letters span the years 1913-1958, more than half were written between 1919 and 1926, an important period in Macaulay’s life and one previously ignored in published collections of her letters. The book is essential reading not only for scholars, students, and fans of Macaulay, but also for all interested in British literary culture and women’s writing in the years 1919-1958. It will inform and entertain general readers as much as specialists.

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These candid letters from Rose Macaulay to her first cousin Jean Smith are previously unknown. Macaulay was one of the most versatile, successful, and significant women writers in the first half of the twentieth century, Smith a talented but diffident and depressive poet who was briefly an Anglican nun before converting to Roman Cathol...

Martin Ferguson Smith is Emeritus Professor of Classics at the University of Durham.

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Format:HardcoverDimensions:400 pages, 9.29 × 6.42 × 1.3 inPublished:May 1, 2011Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0719085217

ISBN - 13:9780719085215

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Extra Content

Table of Contents

List Of Illustrations * Abbreviations * Editor’s Preface* Acknowledgements * Chronology * Introduction * I. Rose Macaulay: The First Half Of Her Life *  The Daughter Who Was Not A Boy. (1881-1894) * Growing Wings. (1894-1903) * The Valley Captive. (1903-1906) * The Secret River. (1906-1914) * War And Love. (1914-1919) * Ii. Jean Smith *  The Consul’s Daughter. (1891-1911) * The Cam Her Camena. (1911-1915) * Munitions And Sugar. (1916-1919) * Helicon And The Isis. (1919-1926) * Canterbury Or Rome? (1926-1938) * War, Duty, And Darkness. (1939-1960) *  “Lead, Kindly Light”. (1961-1979) * The Letters * Appendices * I.  Rose Macaulay’s Birth And First Weeks * Ii. “Ash Wednesday 1941” * Bibliography * I. Works By Rose Macaulay * II. Books About Rose Macaulay * Key To First Names * Family Trees * I. The Family Of Rose Macaulay * II. The Family Of Jean Smith * Index

Editorial Reviews

"Rose Macaulay's is a unique voice in English Literature. If The Towers of Trebizond is her masterpiece, there is also much of her genius in the letters. Indeed, she is one of the great letter-writers in her language and she wrote her best letters to her cousin Jean Smith. This volume is full of previously buried treasure. It will delight Macaulay's fans and win many new readers to appreciate her civilized, witty 'take' on the world."  --A.N.Wilson "These 'new' letters, characterised by the same vitality and wit that are hallmarks of Macaulay's novels, present all kinds of people, places, events, topics, and opinions. They illuminate the writer's life and career, and the literary and social scene, especially in the years that followed the First World War. Their value is enhanced by the thorough work of the editor who has drawn on unpublished as well as published sources." -- Sir Simon Jenkins