Biography, vol. 37, no. 4 (2014)

Editors’ Note, iii

Literary Biography as a Critical Form
Philip Holden, 917
The recent proliferation of formally innovative literary biographies suggests that the genre has an important critical function. Literary biographies are more than simply an ancillary genre; rather, they ask questions regarding the manner in which readers relate to the implied authors of the literary texts they encounter, and their use of this relationship in their own projects of individualization in modern society.

“A Place None of Us Know Until We Reach It”: Mapping Grief and Memory in Joan Didion’s The Year of Magical Thinking
Marta Bladek, 935
Given its by now canonical status as the exemplary grief memoir, I read The Year of Magical Thinking as a narrative that illuminates the spatiality of mourning, or the ways in which the newly bereaved experience specific locations over time. Two currently important theoretical strands within bereavement studies—the spatial turn and memory/memorialization—inform my analysis. I argue that Didion’s evolving experience of the vortex effect, as she refers to a place’s ability to set forward a series of memorial associations, as well as her reliance on spatial imagery to convey the sense of loss, shows that grief does not only unfold over time but also across space.

Relational Maneuvers in Autobiographical Video Art
Matthew Ryan Smith, 953
This paper argues that autobiographical video art radically transforms intersubjective relationships with viewers, and in doing so deconstructs critical spectatorship by positioning the viewer as an interlocutor. Here I draw attention to the work of visual artists Lisa Steele, Colin Campbell, Peter Kingstone, and Irene Loughlin, who help to reconceptualize the interlocutor subject position by using unorthodox transmedial aesthetic strategies.

Annual Bibliography of Works about Life Writing, 2013–2014, 974


Identity Technologies: Constructing the Self Online ed. by Anna Polettti and Julie Rak
Reviewed by Carolyn M. Cunningham, 1133

The Migrant Image: The Art and Politics of Documentary during Global Crisis by T. J. Demos
Reviewed by Claudia Pummer, 1137

Witnessing Witnessing: On the Reception of Holocaust Survivor Testimony by Thomas Trezise
Reviewed by Sven-Erik Rose, 1142

Literature of the Holocaust ed. by Alan Rosen
Reviewed by Russell Alt-Haaker, 1146

Les nouvelles écritures biographiques ed. by Robert Dion and Frédéric Regard
Reviewed by Denis R. Pra, 1149

Spanish Women Travelers at Home and Abroad, 1850– 1920: From Tierra del Fuego to the Land of the Midnight Sun by Jennifer Jenkins Wood
Reviewed by Adriana Méndez Rodenas, 1154

In the Interval of the Wave: Prince Edward Island Women’s Nineteenth and Early Twentieth-Century Life Writing by Mary McDonald-Rissanen
Reviewed by Melanie Ried, 1157

Romancing the Self in Early Modern Englishwomen’s Life Writing by Julie A. Eckerle
Reviewed by Jessica C. Murphy, 1161

Tennessee Williams: Mad Pilgrimage of the Flesh by John Lahr
Reviewed by Joseph H. O’Mealy, 1163


Index: Volume 37, 2014, 1170