Reviews | August 05, 2019
Gathering Places: The Stories of Six Women and the Worlds They Created
The Unfinished Palazzo: Life, Love and Art in Venice, Judith Mackrell, Thames & Hudson, 2017, 408 pp., $34.95. Harcover
The Riviera Set: Glitz, Glamour, and the Hidden World of High Society, Mary S. Lovell, Pegasus Books, 2017, 434 pp., $27.95. Hardcover
The Last Castle: The Epic Story of Love, Loss and American Royalty in the Nation’s Largest Home, Denise Kiernan, Touchstone, 2017, 388 pp., $28. Hardcover
A Season of Splendor: The Court of Mrs. Astor in Gilded Age New York, Greg King, Wiley, 2009, 508 pp., $35. Hardcover.
For Friedrich Nietzsche, greatness was achieved through the full, unflinching realization of self by turning life into a work of art. Separated by time and place, six unique women—Luisa Casati, Doris Castlerosse, Peggy Guggenheim, Maxine Elliot, Edith Vanderbilt, and Caroline Astor—all embody these notions of self-realization and life as art. Despite social conventions meant to dictate the courses of their lives, these independent women reinvented themselves through creativity and tenacity by fashioning worlds in which they could find full expression. The houses they bought or built and the milieux that grew up around them supported their ventures in art, commerce, and activism, ventures that have fascinating stories of their own. The histories of these houses are as richly textured and varied as the lives of their most famous occupants.
If you are a student, faculty member, or staff member at an institution whose library subscribes to Project Muse, you can read this piece and the full archives of the Missouri Review for free. Check this list to see if your library is a Project Muse subscriber.
Want to read more?Subscribe Today
SEE THE ISSUE
Dec 11 2020
Review: Why, Oh Why, Poetry? On Recent Prose about Poetry and the Future of the Art
Why, Oh Why, Poetry?: On Recent Prose about Poetry and the Future of the Art Andrew Mulvania Why Poetry by Matthew Zapruder. Ecco, 2017, 256 pp., $24.99 (hardcover). The
Jun 19 2020
Review: Marching On: Rereading Little Women and Louisa May Alcott
You likely know the plot of Louisa May Alcott’s 1868-9 novel, Little Women. Whether you’ve read the book or seen one of its adaptations to film or screen, you probably
Feb 11 2020
Unencumbered Exuberance: Four Jewish Comic Novelists of Note
In the titular essay of Adam Kirsch’s essay collection Who Wants to Be a Jewish Writer? the critic and poet recounts the ways in which many of his and my