Interpretation is not fiction.
Calling her work "fiction" is dismissive. What fascinates me is that her first
two books were so cautious and admiring, and she only moved to a
more nuanced and mixed mode in the third. But even if one does not agree
with her interpretation, it is valid interpretation, not fiction.
Date sent: Wed, 7 Mar 2001 10:55:47 -0500
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From: Ken Armstrong <[log in to unmask]>
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Subject: RE: Eliot's letters--Gordon's Biography
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On Tue, 6 Mar 2001 21:04:49 -0500 Nancy Gish <[log in to unmask]>
> I do not understand on what possible basis you can judge Gordon's
> meticulously researched material "fiction." It is consistently based on
> cited material, and--more signicantly--Gordon has now done three
> biographies that have gone over and over parallel ground with exacting
> care. It is simply not possible to dismiss
But no one is dismissing Gordon; just pointing out that her
interpretation of Eliot's life is still that, an interpretation. There are
citations, and then there are the selection and presentation of citations.
Arwin says explicitly that she excels in facts. It is what she has
done with them that raises eyebrows. She has cut Eliot's life to fit her
prejudices. That, too, should not be dismissed.