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The Lives of Margaret Fuller by John Matteson.. There is one woman who turns up in just about every account of a successful intellectual male in the mid-nineteenth-century Massachusetts milieu, but she is several, as aptly illuminated in this long-awaited biography.

Joel Gardner, LitSnap Editor

"In the title of his well-written book, Matteson refers to the “lives” of Margaret Fuller because, he explains, she continually reinvented herself over the course of her lifetime. In stressing her “changeability,” her “protean character,” along with the need of a biographer to “resist the temptation to seize a particular moment” in her life as definitive, he implies that the earlier scholars, whose work he acknowledges and praises, nevertheless fell into exactly that trap."

The New York Times

"Margaret Fuller was quintessentially American in that she was constantly reinventing herself and always aiming at self-improvement. Note the plural in the book's title, "The Lives of Margaret Fuller." Mr. Matteson presents his subject as a woman of many incarnations."

The Wall Street Journal

Author bio: I am a native of San Mateo, California who came East for college and, for the most part, stayed. I have a history degree from Princeton, a law degree from Harvard, and a Ph.D. in English from Columbia. In between Harvard and Columbia, I worked as a litigator in San Francisco and Raleigh, North Carolina, but never really knew who I was until I put my law books in storage and decided to devote my life (or a fair amount of it) to reading good books and talking and writing about them. It's worked out pretty well. I'm now a full professor of English at John Jay College. My first book, Eden's Outcasts, won a Pulitzer Prize in biography. More information can be found here:

Book Details: General Nonfiction; (510 pp. Femmography: Kindle/Print editions)

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