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    • November 2008
    • 9780231147378
  • 184 Pages
  • 125 illus.

  • Paperback
  • $29.95
  • / £19.95

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    • November 2008
    • 9780231147361
  • 184 Pages
  • 125 illus.

  • Hardcover
  • $90.00
  • / £62.00

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Yaddo

Making American Culture

Edited by Micki McGee

Established by a pair of philanthropists who believed adamantly in the power of creativity, Yaddo has hosted some of the twentieth century's most renowned writers, composers, and visual artists, including Hannah Arendt, James Baldwin, Saul Bellow, Leonard Bernstein, Elizabeth Bishop, Truman Capote, Flannery O'Connor, Aaron Copland, Langston Hughes, Carson McCullers, Sylvia Plath, Philip Roth, and Clyfford Still.

Richly illustrated with photographs, prints, intimate letters, papers, and ephemera from archives and collections at both Yaddo and The New York Public Library—many of which have never before been seen by the public— Yaddo offers a window into the workings of this famously private institution and insight into the lives and circumstances of the artists who lived and worked there. It examines the relationship between the premier artists' colony and the ideals of democracy and individuality that inform an American vision. From Aaron Copland to Robert Lowell, from Agnes Smedley to Langston Hughes, the volume shares the stories of those who visited this haven and highlights the debates and controversies that threatened to break apart its tranquility. With essays by Marcelle Clements, David Gates, Allan Gurganus, Tim Page, Ruth Price, Barry Werth, Karl Emil Willers, and Helen Vendler, along with an overview by curator Micki McGee, Yaddo revisits the major moments of twentieth-century American culture and history.

About the Author

Micki McGee is a sociologist and cultural critic on the faculty of Fordham University and the curator of the exhibition Yaddo: Making American Culture at the New York Public Library. Formerly a faculty fellow at New York University, she is also the author of Self-Help, Inc.: Makeover Culture in American Life.

"Few names in American arts and letters resonate like Yaddo... This lavishly detailed book offers an intimate glimpse into life at this enchanting and storied retreat." — Publishers Weekly

"[A] beautifully illustrated and engagingly compiled book." — Angus Trumble, Times Literary Supplement

"Things have been written about Yaddo, but nothing comes close to such an insider's look at the institution, its founders, and the place the colony has held in the creation and encouragement of the arts in twentieth-century America. The reminiscences alone are worth the price of entry. They promote an understanding not only of an institution but also of the conditions under which creative minds perform their best labors." — Willard Spiegelman, editor of Love, Amy: The Selected Letters of Amy Clampitt

"Steeped in history and atmosphere, gazing at Yaddo both head on and aslant, this beautifully produced volume conjures up the special nature of a celebrated haven where generations of artists have labored and flourished, connected or parted, while living cheek by jowl with the most beneficent of ghosts." — Frances Kiernan, author of The Last Mrs. Astor: A New York Story

"Yaddo: Making American Culture is an illuminating look inside one of America's most vibrant and influential cultural institutions. Much like Yaddo's magical acres in Saratoga, this is a book and a place one wants to visit again and again. When charting a history of twentieth and twenty-first century American culture, it is amazing to note how many key figures have spent time at Yaddo-and the profound impact of the cross pollination of artists, writers, poets, and composers all creating, creating, creating under one roof. This volume is a most excellent permanent record of a place that embraces the transient, ever ethereal nature of art making." — A. M. Homes, author of The Mistress's Daughter: A Memoir

About the Author

Micki McGee is a sociologist and cultural critic on the faculty of Fordham University and the curator of the exhibition Yaddo: Making American Culture at the New York Public Library. Formerly a faculty fellow at New York University, she is also the author of Self-Help, Inc.: Makeover Culture in American Life.

Foreword, by David S. Ferriero and Elaina Richardson
Preface
1. Creative Power: Yaddo and the Making of American Culture, by Micki McGee
2. Refuge and Crucible: Newton Arvin's Yaddo, by Barry Werth
3. The Trailblazer: Aaron Copland and the Festivals of American Music, by Tim Page
4. In Good Company: Visual Artists at Yaddo, by Karl E. Willers
5. The Ghosts of Yaddo: What They Taught, by Allan Gurganus
6. Living with Artists Is More Fun, by Helen Vendler
7. The Longest Stay: Agnes Smedley, Yaddo, and the "Lowell Affair", by Ruth Price
8. Writ in Water: The Rise and Fall of Literary Reputations, by David Gates
9. Crème de la Crème: Highbrows, Lowbrows, Voracious Omnivores, High, Low, and Hi-Lo, by Marcelle Clements
Note on the Trasks and the Founding of Yaddo
Yaddo Timeline, 1874--1980
Acknowledgments
List of Contributors
Illustration Credits
Index

About the Author

Micki McGee is a sociologist and cultural critic on the faculty of Fordham University and the curator of the exhibition Yaddo: Making American Culture at the New York Public Library. Formerly a faculty fellow at New York University, she is also the author of Self-Help, Inc.: Makeover Culture in American Life.

About the Author

Micki McGee is a sociologist and cultural critic on the faculty of Fordham University and the curator of the exhibition Yaddo: Making American Culture at the New York Public Library. Formerly a faculty fellow at New York University, she is also the author of Self-Help, Inc.: Makeover Culture in American Life.

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About the Author

Micki McGee is a sociologist and cultural critic on the faculty of Fordham University and the curator of the exhibition Yaddo: Making American Culture at the New York Public Library. Formerly a faculty fellow at New York University, she is also the author of Self-Help, Inc.: Makeover Culture in American Life.

About the Author

Micki McGee is a sociologist and cultural critic on the faculty of Fordham University and the curator of the exhibition Yaddo: Making American Culture at the New York Public Library. Formerly a faculty fellow at New York University, she is also the author of Self-Help, Inc.: Makeover Culture in American Life.