Renée Vivien (1839 words)


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The poet known as Renée Vivien was born Pauline Mary Tarn to a British father and an American mother in London.  Her writing career was short but prolific: she published more than 20 volumes of poetry and prose, almost exclusively in French, before her death at the age of thirty-two. The poetry published in her lifetime garnered her a reputation as one of the best second-generation Symbolist poets. Proto-feminist in her vision, Vivien was just one of many subsequent expatriate women writers and artists who found Paris a more amenable home for expressing same-sex desires in life and art than was possible elsewhere.

Vivien's family fortune came from her paternal grandfather, who owned a chain of dry-goods stores. …

Citation: Imhof, Robin. "Renée Vivien". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 05 January 2017 [, accessed 18 June 2021.]

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