A Plea for Eros
By Siri Hustvedt
(Picador USA, Paperback, 9780312425531, 228pp.)
Publication Date: December 27, 2005
List Price: $17.00*
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Whether her subject is growing up in Minnesota, cross-dressing, or the novel, Hustvedt's nonfiction, like her fiction, defies easy categorization, elegantly combining intellect, emotion, wit, and passion. With a light touch and consummate clarity, she undresses the cultural prejudices that veil both literature and life and explores the multiple personalities that inevitably inhabit a writer's mind. Is it possible for a woman in the twentieth century to endorse the corset, and at the same time approach with authority what it is like to be a man? Hustvedt does. Writing with rigorous honesty about her own divided self, and how this has shaped her as a writer, she also approaches the works of others--Fitzgerald, Dickens, and Henry James--with revelatory insight, and a practitioner's understanding of their art.