Sylvia Plath is widely recognized as one of the most important American poets of the twentieth century. Her books include the poetry collections The Colossus and Other Poems (reissued by Vintage in 1998); Ariel (reissued in 1999) and Crossing the Water (1980), both reissued by Harper Perennial; Winter Trees (Faber and Faber, 1975); and The Collected Poems (Harper Colophon), which won the Pulitzer Prize in 1982, as well as the novel The Bell Jar (which Plath originally published under the pseudonym Victoria Lucas); and a posthumous prose collection, Johnny Panic and the Bible of Dreams: Short Stories, Prose, and Diary Excerpts (both reissued by Harper Perennial in 2000).
Born in Boston, Massachusetts, in 1932, Plath graduated from Smith College in 1955 and won a Fulbright Scholarship to Cambridge University. She was married to the English poet Ted Hughes, and together they had two children, Frieda and Nicholas. Plath died in London in 1963, and is buried in the churchyard at Heptonstall, West Yorkshire.
In 2000, The Unabridged Journals of Sylvia Plath, edited by Karen V. Kukil, was published by Anchor Books, and in 2004 HarperCollins Publishers issued Ariel: The Restored Edition: A Facsimile of Plath's Manuscript, Reinstating Her Original Selection and Arrangement, with a foreword by Frieda Hughes.
Photo by Eric Stahlberg