By Joanne Feit Diehl
This hugely leading edge paintings on poetic effect between girls writers specializes in the connection among modernist poet Elizabeth Bishop and her mentor Marianne Moore. Departing from Freudian versions of effect concept that forget about the query of maternal presence, Joanne Diehl applies the psychoanalytic insights of item relatives theorists Melanie Klein and Christopher Bollas to woman-to-woman literary transactions. She lays the foundation for a far-reaching serious process as she indicates that Bishop, mourning her separation from her traditional mom, strives to stability gratitude towards Moore, her literary mom, with a almost certainly disabling envy.
Diehl starts via exploring Bishop's memoir of Moore, "Efforts of Affection," as an try out through Bishop to ensure Moore's strong point with a purpose to protect herself opposed to her predecessor's nearly overwhelming originality. She then deals an intertextual interpreting of the 2 writers' works that inquires into Bishop's ambivalence towards Moore. In an research of "Crusoe in England" and "In the Village," Diehl exposes the restorative impulses that gas aesthetic production and investigates how Bishop thematizes an knowing of literary creation as a strategy of psychic compensation.
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Additional resources for Elizabeth Bishop and Marianne Moore: The Psychodynamics of Creativity
Here, Bishop does stop to defend herself, an indication of the serious divergence of their views. As we have seen, conﬂict in Bishop’s memoir does not characteristically provoke verbal refutation but rather denial, or acquiescence, as if Moore’s and Bishop’s relationship or Bishop’s perception of it could not withstand the open pursuit of difference. 36 “EFFORTS OF AFFECTION” Bishop thereby remains the “good” daughter whose independence from the controlling, dominant mother signals a pain that might injure or initiate the loss of the mother/mentor/friend herself.
What Bishop admires, among other elements in Moore’s work, is the direct treatment of issues that the feminists themselves have deemed important: “Have they really read ‘Marriage,’ a poem that says everything they are saying and everything Virginia Woolf has said? ” One should not overlook the self-revelatory terms in which Bishop couches her approval of Moore’s personal and aesthetic choices: Perhaps it was pride or vanity that kept her from complaints, and that put her sense of injustice through the prisms dissected by “those various scalpels” into poetry.
Bishop’s descriptions of such diverting entertainment, moreover, re-introduce themes of gender identity through the guise of amusement. In “Some Expeditions,” Mrs. Moore, deciding that the adult Marianne needs a diversion, takes her to Coney Island. There Marianne and her mother watch Sheba, “an unusually large and docile elephant,” perform. When Bishop asks Moore about the elephant’s appearance, her response completely ignores the fact that she is describing an animal and not a woman, a peculiarity silently 34 “EFFORTS OF AFFECTION” underlined by Bishop’s transcribing the description without adding a word.