Upon the publication of her posthumous volume of poetry, Ariel, in the mid-1960s, Sylvia Plath became a household name. Readers may be surprised to learn that the draft of Ariel left behind by Sylvia Plath when she died in 1963 is different from the volume of poetry eventually published to worldwide acclaim.
This facsimile edition restores, for the first time, the selection and arrangement of the poems as Sylvia Plath left them at the point of her death. In addition to the facsimile pages of Sylvia Plaths manuscript, this edition also includes in facsimile the complete working drafts of the title poem, "Ariel," in order to offer a sense of Plath's creative process, as well as notes the author made for the BBC about some of the manuscript's poems.
In her insightful foreword to this volume, Frieda Hughes, Sylvia Plath's daughter, explains the reasons for the differences between the previously published edition of Ariel as edited by her father, Ted Hughes, and her mother's original version published here. With this publication, Sylvia Plath's legacy and vision will be re-evaluated in the light of her original working draft.
About the Author
Sylvia Plath was born in Boston, Massachusetts in 1932, and was a writer from early in life, publishing poems in local newspapers from the age of eight. Despite the clinical depression that affected her deeply, Plath excelled at Smith College and subsequently attended Newnham College in Cambridge on a Fulbright fellowship grant. In England, Plath met and married fellow poet Ted Hughes. Their marriage was often an unhappy one, and Hughes left Plath after the birth of their second child. In the time following, Plath wrote many of her most famous poems, often drawing inspiration from the rocky relationships with the men in her life--in particular her marriage to Hughes and her relationship with her father, whose strict manner and death during her childhood had greatly impacted her. Plath's works include the poems "Daddy," "Lady Lazarus," and "Poppies in July," as well as the novel The Bell Jar, which reflects Plath's own experiences with severe depression. Plath was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for The Collected Works nearly twenty years after her suicide in 1963.