About the Book
‘I believe that marriage, whether we see it as a psychological relationship or a political one, has determined the story of all our lives more than we have generally acknowledged.’
In every relationship there are two narratives; more often than not these narratives do not converge.
This is the basis for academic and writer Phyllis Rose’s cult classic Parallel Lives, a book that examines five literary Victorian partnerships, from Charles Dickens’s disastrous marriage to Catherine Hogarth to George Eliot’s joyful and unwed union with George Henry Lewes.
In an age where divorce was scandalous and ‘until death do us part’ was taken literally, the subjects of Rose’s book were forced to find inventive and surprising ways to coexist. As she tracks the shifting tides of power within these parallel lives in fascinating detail, Rose shows how desire, fantasy and control play out in our most intimate relationships.
Parallel Lives is an engrossing group biography and an essential work of feminist non-fiction that continues to resonate, compelling us to reflect on how we live now.
About the Authors
Phyllis Rose is the author of Woman of Letters: A Life of Virginia Woolf, Jazz Cleopatra, The Year of Reading Proust: A Memoir in Real Time, The Shelf: From LEQ to LES, and, most recently, Alfred Stieglitz: Taking Pictures, Making Painters. She is the editor of The Norton Book of Women's Lives. For many years she was a professor of English at Wesleyan University in Middletown, Connecticut. She divides her time between Key West, Florida and New York.
Sheila Hetiis the author of eight books, including the novels Motherhood, How Should a Person Be? and Ticknor. Her books have been translated into twenty-two languages. She lives in Toronto.
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