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  The Bell Jar (1963) by Sylvia Plath  
Sylvia Plath image credit: Rollie McKenna
Esther Greenwood's life parallels that of the book's author Sylvia Plath. Both are Bostonians who have lost their fathers, both are poets and both received electroshock therapy.

Set during the 1950s, this is the story of a young woman's breakdown. The novel examines attitudes to female sexuality and motherhood.

Modern American Poetry: Sylvia Plath
Plath online
The madness and artistry of Sylvia Plath

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