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Lead book review

Formidable woman of letters: the grit and wisdom of Elizabeth Hardwick

Elaine Showalter celebrates the grit and wisdom of Elizabeth Hardwick

22 January 2022

9:00 AM

22 January 2022

9:00 AM

A Splendid Intelligence: The Life of Elizabeth Hardwick Cathy Curtis

W.W. Norton, pp.400, 27.99

In an author’s note at the beginning of her biography of Elizabeth Hardwick, Cathy Curtis warns that she has included ‘only as much information’ about Hardwick’s ‘famous husband, the poet Robert Lowell, as is necessary to tell the story of her life’. Ironically, this caveat highlights Hardwick’s status as another wife of the poet.

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