In Collaboration with British Literary Biography
This book is about one person’s reading and what has been learnt about how the lives of other people, particularly authors, have been written in British literary biographies over the last fifty years. It is less interested in what happened in the lives of the people described in these biographies, and more concerned with how these stories have been told. It aims to have a conversation with British biographers, particularly Michael Holroyd, Richard Holmes, Hermione Lee and Claire Tomalin, to make their voices heard, to set them talking. It understands biography as an ongoing collaboration, not only between biographers and their subjects, but between biographers and their readers. This is also a study of haunting, in which we haunt the lives of others to help us come to a better understanding of our own.
Jane McVeigh is an Honorary Research Fellow in the English & Creative Writing Department at the University of Roehampton, UK.