First published in the 1970s, Vivian Gornick’s The Romance of American Communism was rereleased last month after being unavailable for several years. In celebration, we’ve delved into our archive to bring you just a few of the essays Gornick has written for Boston Review over the past two decades—with more available online.
Perhaps most well-known for her skills as a memoirist, the essays in today’s reading list put her gift for profiles on display. From Hannah Arendt to H. G. Wells, and Camus to Colette, Gornick uncovers the inner lives of her subjects, peeling away the outer layers that readers may be more familiar with to instead reveal their innermost contradictions.
Simone de Beauvoir’s relationship with her readers was a mutually demanding collaboration.
The “happily ever after” of marriage ruined the Tolstoys.
The cause of Camus's native countrymen moved him, yet he yearned helplessly toward the European culture that had formed him.
An interview with Vivian Gornick about the mother of anarchism.
The romantic obsessions of Colette, Simone de Beauvoir, and Marguerite Duras.