Two Lives: Gertrude and Alice

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Melbourne University Publish, 2007 - Americans - 229 pages
4 Reviews
Two Lives is Janet Malcolm's stunning portrait of a legendary couple: Gertrude Stein, the modernist master, and Alice B Toklas, the 'worker bee' who ministered to Stein's needs throughout their forty-year expatriate 'marriage'. As Malcolm pursues the truth of the couple's charmed life in a village in Vichy France her subject becomes the larger question of biographical truth. 'The instability of human knowledge is one of our few certainties,' she writes. The portrait of their relationship that emerges is unexpectedly charged. The two world wars Stein and Toklas lived through together are paralleled by the private war that went on between them. This war, as Malcolm learned, sometimes flared into bitter combat. Janet Malcolm is at her finest in this extraordinary work of literary biography and investigative journalism.

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User Review  - dbsovereign - LibraryThing

Interesting [true] story of how Gertrude and Alice managed to live/survive Vichy France during WW2 despite being Jewish and lesbianic types. Fascinating reading for anyone truly interested in Stein ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - nancyewhite - LibraryThing

A literary biography of Gertrude Stein and Alice B. Tolklas by New Yorker writer Janet Malcolm. This is not a chronology of their lives but rather explorations of particular questions like "How did ... Read full review

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