T. S. Eliot once spoke of a lifetime burning in every moment. He had the mind to conceive a perfect life, and he also had the honesty to admit he could not meet it. 'He was a man of extremes whose deep flaws and high virtues were interfused,' writes Lyndall Gordon in this perceptive and innovative biography of the great poet. She brilliantly explores his poetry, drama and essays in relationship to the four quite different women in his life and to his time in America and England. The Imperfect Life of T.S. Eliot follows the trials of a searcher whose flaws and doubts speak to all of us whose lives are imperfect.
This prize-winning biography, newly revised, sees Virginia Woolf as she saw herself. The first to set out the private life behind the well-known facts of her public career, A Writer's Life rocks back and forth between memories and art to reveal an explorer of 'the infinite oddity of the human position'. Instead of the doom-and-death often imposed on women of genius, here is the robust walker and seeker for what was fertile in her intimacies, in women's nature, and in resistance to power. This edition brings out her ideas for biography itself: to fall on a life 'like a roll of heavy waters... laying bare the pebbles on the shore of the soul'.