Her Husband: Hughes and Plath--a Marriage

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Viking, 2003 - Biography & Autobiography - 361 pages
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Ted Hughes married Sylvia Plath in 1956, at the outset of their brilliant careers. Plath's suicide six and a half years later, for which many held Hughes accountable, changed his life, his closest relationships, his standing in the literary world, and the style and substance of his verse. In this stunning new biography of their marriage, Diane Middlebrook presents a portrait of Hughes as a man, as a poet, and as a husband haunted-and nourished-his entire life by the aftermath of his first marriage.

Drawing on a trove of newly available papers Middlebrook presents Hughes as a complicated, conflicted figure: sexually magnetic, fiercely ambitious, immensely caring, and shrewd in business. She argues that Plath's suicide, though it devastated Hughes and made him vulnerable to the savage attacks of Plath's growing readership, ultimately gave him his true subject-how marriages fail and how men fail in marriage.

Writing with the penetrating insight and lucid sympathy that informed her previous bestselling biographies, Middlebrook rises to the multiple challenges presented by this highly fraught, deeply controversial subject. Her Husbandis a triumph of the biographer's art and craft.

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User Review  - Not Available - Book Verdict

Plath's grave is inscribed "Sylvia Plath Hughes"; this semiotic married name, regularly excoriated from her English tombstone by avenging devotees, evokes her young adulthood as siren, wife, lover ... Read full review

Her husband: Hughes and Plath--a marriage

User Review  - Not Available - Book Verdict

The marriage of Sylvia Plath and Ted Hughes has been written about for decades, the riveting aspects of their relationship splashed tabloid style across the pages of popular biographies and ... Read full review


Romance 1956
His Family 1956
Struggling 19561963

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About the author (2003)

Diane Middlebrook is the author of two highly praised, bestselling biographies, Suits Me: The Double Life of Billy Tiptonand Anne Sexton: A Biography, which was a National Book Award and was a National Book Critics Circle Award finalist.

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