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A passionate affair resulted in her becoming pregnant but instead of her lover she married an older man who she left the same evening with the marriage unconsummated. In she began a relationship with John Middleton Murry, a magazine editor, and although it was volatile it enabled her to write some of her best stories.

Mansfield's creative years were burdened with loneliness, illness, jealousy, and alienation which was reflected in her work with the bitter depiction of marital and family relationships of her middle-class characters. Her defining themes of New Zealand, childhood, adulthood, social class, class conflict, innocence, and experience often focused on trivial events and subtle changes in human behaviour.

Katherine Mansfield

During the First World War Mansfield contracted extra-pulmonary tuberculosis, which rendered any return or visit to New Zealand impossible and led to her death at the tender age of 34 on 9th January, in Fontainebleau, France. Her stories provide a legacy far beyond her years but leave us wondering what she could have been capable of had she lived longer.

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The Collected Letters of Katherine Mansfield: Volume 1: by Katherine Mansfield

Unable to Load Delivery Dates. Enter an Australian post code for delivery estimate. Link Either by signing into your account or linking your membership details before your order is placed. Description Table of Contents Product Details Click on the cover image above to read some pages of this book! Prelude p.


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All Rights Reserved. To air oneself among these things. To hear from the back of the shop the sounds of the ball game. The cries of the crowd came to me like big heartbeats, full of sorrow. Here we find the same passion as in Mansfield to bear witness, to implicate oneself as a writer in the flux and flow of things while remaining aloof.

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Her sense of the vast distance separating her from New Zealand — the knowledge she could never return there — makes the late stories burn with love and yearning even as her own life was guttering out. What one remembers most vividly about Prelude , however, is not its elegant structure but its elegiac power and mystery. It is by no means among her best stories, but it illustrates her courage.

Pregnant and forsaken, she was banished by her mother who would cut Katherine out of her will to Germany, where she lost the baby and plunged into an affair with a Polish writer, contracting gonorrhoea.

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This story is pronouncedly satirical, but it shines with pathos, and its sordid narrator is never merely a caricature. In truth Mansfield chose sexual freedom, just as she chose to live far from the provincial colonial society she would later write about with such yearning: courageous choices for a woman at that time, especially as if the Bloomsbury set were nasty towards one another they were doubly so to an outsider.


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  8. Their Edinburgh Edition of the Collected Works of Katherine Mansfield , containing every fragment as well as all the finished stories some rescued from the meddlesome editorial hands of her second husband, John Middleton Murry, and restored to their original state , undeniably establishes her as a great modernist writer. We use cookies to personalise content, target and report on ads, to provide social media features and to analyse our traffic.

    For more information see our Cookie Policy. Katherine Mansfield: the radiant touch of genius A work of superb scholarship that is clearly also a labour of love.

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    Elizabeth Wassell. Sat, Feb 1, , First published: Sat, Feb 1, , More from The Irish Times Books.