Ana´s Nin: a biography

Front Cover
Putnam's, 1995 - Biography & Autobiography - 654 pages
13 Reviews
Deirdre Bair, renowned for her biographies of Samuel Beckett and Simone de Beauvoir, has now written the definitive biography of the complex and controversial Anais Nin. With exclusive and unprecedented access to all of Nin's unpublished archives, including more than 250,000 handwritten diary pages, Bair paints a startlingly different portrait of Nin, hitherto best known for her sexual peccadilloes and especially her affair with Henry Miller. Bair reveals Nin's lifelong struggle to become a respected writer, to position herself at the right hand of the intellectual elite, and to construct a way of life so complicated that it verged at times on incomprehensibility, even to herself.
"To live life as a dream" was Nin's motto, and she did so. She was a bigamist for more than thirty years, creating a "Lie Box" to help her keep her stories straight. And always she kept her diary, which eventually became one of the most astonishing renderings of a contemporary woman's life, noted as much for what she left out as for what she included. Bair's biography fills in the blanks and shows how Nin reflected the major themes that have come to characterize the latter half of the twentieth century: the quest for the self, the uses of psychoanalysis, and the determination of women to control their own sexuality.

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Review: Ana´s Nin: A Biography

User Review  - Chloe Coventry - Goodreads

I find Bair's take on Anais Nin's life to be oddly judgmental. A curious scolding condescension colors this biography. Yes, Nin may have been a narcissist, but Bair portrays her as a spoiled brat ... Read full review

Review: Ana´s Nin: A Biography

User Review  - Dieuwertje Heuvelings - Goodreads

terrible subjective biography Read full review

Contents

A Most Unlikely Marriage
3
The Ugly Little Girl
12
The Indispensable Lifeline
28
Copyright

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About the author (1995)

Deirdre Bair is the critically acclaimed author of four previous works of nonfiction. She received the National Book Award for "Samuel Beckett: A Biography," and her biographies of Ana´ s Nin and Simone de Beauvoir were also prize finalists. Her biography of C. G. Jung was a finalist for the Los Angeles Times Book Prize and received the Gradiva Award from the National Association for the Advancement of Psychoanalysis. She has been awarded fellowships from (among others) the Guggenheim and Rockefeller foundations and the Bunting Institute of Radcliffe College. She has been a literary journalist and university professor of comparative literature and now divides her time between New York and Connecticut.