Holding On Upside Down: The Life and Work of Marianne Moore

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Faber & Faber, Nov 5, 2013 - Biography & Autobiography - 480 pages

Marianne Moore (1887-1972) has been heralded as America's greatest poet of the modernist movement. Her volume Collected Poems won the National Book Award and the Pulitzer Prize in 1952 and the Bollingen Prize in 1953.

Born in St. Louis, Missouri, Moore eventually found her way to New York with her mother whom she continued to live with until her mother passed, a familial devotion so intense that William Carlos Williams complained that it was 'pathological' and prevented her from marrying any 'literary guys'. Moore never married. Linda Leavall is the first biographer to be granted access and freedom to quote from Moore's archives. More than just a standard biography, Leavall re-examines Moore's body of work to complement and enlighten the biography.

Through Moore's poems and letters from T. S. Eliot, William Carlos Williams, and many others, Leavall has written what is sure to be the definitive biography of Moore.

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User Review  - dasam - LibraryThing

Leavell's account of the life and work of Marianne Moore raised some objections that it was unfair to Moore's mother. The Moore family dynamics were certainly off. But Leavell adds to the case that ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - akblanchard - LibraryThing

Poet Marianne Moore (1887-1972), her brother Warren, and her mother Mary formed a tight family threesome that stuck together even through Warren's marriage and career up until Mary's death. Marianne ... Read full review

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About the author (2013)

Linda Leavell is a Professor Emerita of English at Oklahoma State University. Her first book, Marianne Moore and the Visual Arts: Prismatic Color (LSU 1995), won the SCMLA book award and her articles on Moore have appeared in various publications, among them American Literary History and Twentieth Century Literature.

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