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This report is taken from PN Review 184, Volume 35 Number 2, November - December 2008.

Archive Corner 11: Elaine Feinstein Stella Halkyard

Turning the Hermeneutic Circle in the Papers of Elaine Feinstein

Gold is a substance long associated with Elaine Feinstein's writing, so the signs are propitious as a 'wintry gold floods' the grey of a cold January day in 2005. She emails her publisher in Manchester. She asks him to suggest an appropriate place for her to deposit her literary papers. They have become too voluminous to be accommodated comfortably at home. 'Do you think the Rylands Library would be interested in housing [my archive]?' Her publisher, editorial director of the Carcanet Press, responds positively, an archivist is despatched with the speed of an arrow to London to appraise Feinstein's papers.

As a writer Elaine Feinstein first found herself as a poet. Her collections include: In a Green Eye (1966); The Magic Apple Tree (1971); The Celebrants and Other Poems (1973); Some Unease and Angels (1977); Badlands (1987); City Music (1990); Selected Poems (1994); Daylight (1997); Gold (2000); Collected Poems and Translations (2002); and Talking to the Dead (2007). Since the 1980s her poetry has been published by Carcanet and the prehistories of these books reside within the Press's Archive in the Rylands. The literary circles with which she has engaged are, and always have been, eclectic: she has an ...

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