Friday, May 22, 2009

Marianne Moore on Elizabeth Barrett Browning:
There was a young lady named Liz
Who made writing poems her biz
But when she met Bob
She gave up the job
It took all her time to read his

RML 1250/1, qtd. in Cristanne Miller, Marianne Moore: Questions of Authority. Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard UP, 1995. 268n46. Print.


skg said...

heh. A friend and I have been swapping references we've seen (over several years) to women, particularly wives, thanked for typing / proofreading / indexing / otherwise preparing a book for publication and left unnamed, as though it were part of the usual duties of a wife to be a silent, not-quite-participatory intellectual.

Natalia said...

Ouch. Of course, there's need to name Arthur du Book's wife. Her name is Mrs. Arthur du Book.

Semi-relatedly, Naomi Oreskes has a whole article on heroism in science and women's (therefore invisible) scientific labor [JSTOR]. I have my own ideas about the issues Oreskes brings up, but... mechanicity is a theme here, let's just say.

skg said...

Thanks for the link.

My current (un)favorite thank-you: a German dissertation (they're required to be published as books, minimally) that thanks the wife for not only typing the manuscript but organizing its lists and writing its many Chinese and Korean characters. It's a study of a twelfth-century Korean glossary written in Chinese and he gives a full wordlist with translations into modern German, so the logographs are, like, a quarter of the book. I really wonder what's behind that one, since one needs better-than-quotidian knowledge of these obscure, often archaic Chinese characters to write them tidily.

And I shan't name him or the book because he's still alive and uses the internet. :P

Natalia said...