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Wednesday, October 28, 2020

Biographer Extraordinaire

 “No one sits on the stoop when she's a kid and thinks, 'I want to be a biographer when I grow up.” – Stacy Schiff

But, that career path has been a good one for Schiff, who won the 2000 Pulitzer Prize for Vera, a biography of Vera Nabokov, wife and muse of Vladimir Nabokov.  She also was a Pulitzer finalist for Saint-Exupéry: A Biography about French writer and adventurer Antoine de Saint Exupéry.

A native of Massachusetts, Schiff (born Oct. 26, 1961) also has won a number of other awards for her biographical works on Benjamin Franklin and Cleopatra, and earned a Newberry Library Award for her overall body of writing.  But, despite her many prizes, she said that biographers, including herself, aren’t always objective in their work. 
 “Oh, I don't think there is ever objective biography,” she insisted.  “Our vision of our subject is always shaped by who we are. So I do, of course, think the biographer's view is always something to keep in mind.”

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