Saskia Hamilton - The Dolphin Letters, 1970-1979: Elizabeth Hardwick, Robert Lowell, and Their Circl
Hamilton's exquisitely crafted selection of letters exchanged between Robert Lowell, Elizabeth Hardwick, and their most intimate friends in the last years of Lowell's life, is at once a haunting portrait of one of the great literary power couples and a reflection on the freedom and limits of art. Building on her work as editor of The Letters of Robert Lowell and coeditor of Words in Air, Hamilton begins in 1970, when Lowell was teaching in England—and falling in love with Caroline Blackwood—and Hardwick was writing and raising their daughter in New York. The collection then moves into the literary betrayal that followed the marital one, chronicling the shock that greeted Lowell's appropriation of passages from Hardwick's letters in the sonnets of his 1973 The Dolphin. Hamilton will be in conversation with Kay Redfield Jamison, author of Robert Lowell: Setting the River on Fire.