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Margaret Fuller: A New American Life

by

Margaret Fuller: A New American Life Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Winner of the Pulitzer Prize for Biography

"Thoroughly absorbing, lively . . . Fuller, so misunderstood in life, richly deserves the nuanced, compassionate portrait Marshall paints." — Boston Globe

Pulitzer Prize finalist Megan Marshall recounts the trailblazing life of Margaret Fuller: Thoreaus first editor, Emersons close friend, daring war correspondent, tragic heroine. After her untimely death in a shipwreck off Fire Island, the sense and passion of her lifes work were eclipsed by scandal. Marshalls inspired narrative brings her back to indelible life.

Whether detailing her front-page New-York Tribune editorials against poor conditions in the citys prisons and mental hospitals, or illuminating her late-in-life hunger for passionate experience—including a secret affair with a young officer in the Roman Guard—Marshalls biography gives the most thorough and compassionate view of an extraordinary woman. No biography of Fuller has made her ideas so alive or her life so moving.

“Megan Marshalls brilliant Margaret Fuller brings us as close as we are ever likely to get to this astonishing creature. She rushes out at us from her nineteenth century, always several steps ahead, inspiring, heartbreaking, magnificent.” — Rebecca Newberger Goldstein, author of Betraying Spinoza: The Renegade Jew Who Gave Us Modernity

 

"Shaping her narrative like a novel, Marshall brings the reader as close as possible to Fullers inner life and conveys the inspirational power she has achieved for several generations of women." — New Republic

Review:

"Pulitzer Prize finalist Marshall (The Peabody Sisters) takes on the life of a lesser-known American writer in this biography of Margaret Fuller, whose book Women in the Nineteenth Century was merely the most successful among those she produced during a lifetime of impassioned intellectual discourse, both public and private. Marshall sticks closely to the primary documents of Fuller's life. Though the biography reads as a narrative, the text is peppered with quotations from Fuller's letters, essays, fiction, and personal diaries. This abundance of detail sometimes descends into tedium. Though organized around places Fuller lived, the book's real driving force is her relationships, from the perfectionist father who gave her a thirst for education early on to the circle of academics and radicals over whom Fuller exerted her influence, among them Ralph Waldo Emerson. Marshall can't avoid the romantic scandal of Fuller's life — her accidental pregnancy by and secret marriage to the noble-born Giovanni Ossoli. The couple died in a shipwreck along with their newborn son soon after. But this scandal isn't the focus of the book. Instead, Marshall seeks to render the plight of a female intellectual struggling to balance societal expectations with her lofty ambitions and ideals. The book's success comes from the way that Marshall allows the reader to understand and empathize with Fuller in her plight. Agent: Katinka Matson, Brockman Agency." Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

Synopsis:

Winner of the Pulitzer Prize for Biography
 
The award-winning author of The Peabody Sisters takes a fresh look at the trailblazing life of a great American heroine—Thoreaus first editor, Emersons close friend, first female war correspondent, passionate advocate of personal and political freedom.

Synopsis:

“Pitches Ms. Marshall into the front rank of American biographers . . . Margaret Fuller is as seductive as it is impressive . . . It delivers a lovely and bumpy coming-of-age story, one of the best such stories nineteenth-century America has to offer.” —New York Times Pulitzer Prize finalist Megan Marshall recounts the trailblazing life of Margaret Fuller: Thoreaus first editor, Emersons close friend, daring war correspondent, tragic heroine. After her untimely death in a shipwreck off Fire Island, the sense and passion of her lifes work were eclipsed by scandal. Marshalls inspired narrative brings her back to indelible life.

Whether detailing her front-page New-York Tribune editorials against poor conditions in the citys prisons and mental hospitals, or illuminating her late-in-life hunger for passionate experience—including a secret affair with a young officer in the Roman Guard—Marshalls biography gives the most thorough and compassionate view of an extraordinary woman. No biography of Fuller has made her ideas so alive or her life so moving.

Synopsis:

Winner of the Pulitzer Prize for Biography
 
From an early age, Margaret Fuller provoked and dazzled New Englands intellectual elite. Her famous Conversations changed womens sense of how they could think and live; her editorship of the Transcendentalist literary journal the Dial shaped American Romanticism. Now, Megan Marshall, whose acclaimed The Peabody Sisters “discovered” three fascinating women, has done it again: no biography of Fuller has made her ideas so alive or her life so moving.

Marshall tells the story of how Fuller, tired of Boston, accepted Horace Greeleys offer to be the New-York Tribunes front-page columnist. The move unleashed a crusading concern for the urban poor and the plight of prostitutes, and a late-in-life hunger for passionate experience. In Italy as a foreign correspondent, Fuller took a secret lover, a young officer in the Roman Guard; she wrote dispatches on the brutal 1849 Siege of Rome; and she gave birth to a son.

Yet, when all three died in a shipwreck off Fire Island shortly after Fullers fortieth birthday, the sense and passion of her lifes work were eclipsed by tragedy and scandal. Marshalls inspired account brings an American heroine back to indelible life.

About the Author

Megan Marshall is the author of The Peabody Sisters, which won the Francis Parkman Prize, the Mark Lynton History Prize, the Massachusetts Book Award in Nonfiction, and was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize in biography and memoir. Her essays and reviews have appeared in The New Yorker, The New York Times Book Review, The Atlantic, and Slate. A recipient of Guggenheim and NEH fellowships, Marshall teaches narrative nonfiction and the art of archival research in the MFA program at Emerson College.

Table of Contents

List of Illustrations xiii

Prologue xv

Part I: Youth

   1.   Three Letters 5

   2.   Ellen Kilshaw 10

   3.   Theme: “Possunt quia posse videntur” 20

   4.   Mariana 28

Part II: Cambridge

   5.   The Young Ladys Friends 39

   6.   Elective Affinities 51

Part III: Groton and Providence

   7.   “My heart has no proper home” 71

   8.   “Returned into life” 89

   9.   “Bringing my opinions to the test” 105

Part IV: concord, boston, jamaica plain

   10.   “What were we born to do?” 127

   11.   “The gospel of Transcendentalism” 142

   12.   Communities and Covenants 163

   13.   “The newest new world” 202

Part V: New York

   14.   “I stand in the sunny noon of life” 223

   15.   “Flying on the paper wings of every day” 235

   16.   “A human secret, like my own” 244

Part VI: Europe

   17.   Lost on Ben Lomond 269

   18.   “Rome has grown up in my soul” 282

   19.   “A being born wholly of my being” 315

Part VII: homeward

   20.   “I have lived in a much more full and true way” 353

   21.   “No favorable wind” 369

 
Epilogue: “After so dear a storm” 379

Acknowledgments 393

Notes 397

Index 451

Product Details

ISBN:
9780547195605
Author:
Marshall, Megan
Publisher:
Houghton Mifflin
Subject:
General Biography
Subject:
Women
Subject:
Biography-Women
Edition Description:
Trade Cloth
Publication Date:
20130331
Binding:
Paperback
Language:
English
Illustrations:
22 images as part openers + endpapers
Pages:
496
Dimensions:
9 x 6 in 9.99 lb

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Related Subjects

Biography » General
Biography » Women
History and Social Science » Feminist Studies » 1800 to 1920
History and Social Science » Gender Studies » Womens Studies
History and Social Science » Politics » General
Humanities » Literary Criticism » General

Margaret Fuller: A New American Life New Hardcover
0 stars - 0 reviews
$30.00 In Stock
Product details 496 pages Houghton Mifflin Harcourt (HMH) - English 9780547195605 Reviews:
"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "Pulitzer Prize finalist Marshall (The Peabody Sisters) takes on the life of a lesser-known American writer in this biography of Margaret Fuller, whose book Women in the Nineteenth Century was merely the most successful among those she produced during a lifetime of impassioned intellectual discourse, both public and private. Marshall sticks closely to the primary documents of Fuller's life. Though the biography reads as a narrative, the text is peppered with quotations from Fuller's letters, essays, fiction, and personal diaries. This abundance of detail sometimes descends into tedium. Though organized around places Fuller lived, the book's real driving force is her relationships, from the perfectionist father who gave her a thirst for education early on to the circle of academics and radicals over whom Fuller exerted her influence, among them Ralph Waldo Emerson. Marshall can't avoid the romantic scandal of Fuller's life — her accidental pregnancy by and secret marriage to the noble-born Giovanni Ossoli. The couple died in a shipwreck along with their newborn son soon after. But this scandal isn't the focus of the book. Instead, Marshall seeks to render the plight of a female intellectual struggling to balance societal expectations with her lofty ambitions and ideals. The book's success comes from the way that Marshall allows the reader to understand and empathize with Fuller in her plight. Agent: Katinka Matson, Brockman Agency." Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
"Synopsis" by ,
Winner of the Pulitzer Prize for Biography
 
The award-winning author of The Peabody Sisters takes a fresh look at the trailblazing life of a great American heroine—Thoreaus first editor, Emersons close friend, first female war correspondent, passionate advocate of personal and political freedom.
"Synopsis" by , “Pitches Ms. Marshall into the front rank of American biographers . . . Margaret Fuller is as seductive as it is impressive . . . It delivers a lovely and bumpy coming-of-age story, one of the best such stories nineteenth-century America has to offer.” —New York Times Pulitzer Prize finalist Megan Marshall recounts the trailblazing life of Margaret Fuller: Thoreaus first editor, Emersons close friend, daring war correspondent, tragic heroine. After her untimely death in a shipwreck off Fire Island, the sense and passion of her lifes work were eclipsed by scandal. Marshalls inspired narrative brings her back to indelible life.

Whether detailing her front-page New-York Tribune editorials against poor conditions in the citys prisons and mental hospitals, or illuminating her late-in-life hunger for passionate experience—including a secret affair with a young officer in the Roman Guard—Marshalls biography gives the most thorough and compassionate view of an extraordinary woman. No biography of Fuller has made her ideas so alive or her life so moving.

"Synopsis" by ,
Winner of the Pulitzer Prize for Biography
 
From an early age, Margaret Fuller provoked and dazzled New Englands intellectual elite. Her famous Conversations changed womens sense of how they could think and live; her editorship of the Transcendentalist literary journal the Dial shaped American Romanticism. Now, Megan Marshall, whose acclaimed The Peabody Sisters “discovered” three fascinating women, has done it again: no biography of Fuller has made her ideas so alive or her life so moving.

Marshall tells the story of how Fuller, tired of Boston, accepted Horace Greeleys offer to be the New-York Tribunes front-page columnist. The move unleashed a crusading concern for the urban poor and the plight of prostitutes, and a late-in-life hunger for passionate experience. In Italy as a foreign correspondent, Fuller took a secret lover, a young officer in the Roman Guard; she wrote dispatches on the brutal 1849 Siege of Rome; and she gave birth to a son.

Yet, when all three died in a shipwreck off Fire Island shortly after Fullers fortieth birthday, the sense and passion of her lifes work were eclipsed by tragedy and scandal. Marshalls inspired account brings an American heroine back to indelible life.

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