ENCOUNTERS by Dorothy Norman


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Born in Philadelphia in 1905, the author has led a fascinating life. She has met and known some of the outstanding figures in art, literature and politics. Her memory is prodigious, and her comments on the events of the past 60 years frank and perceptive. Norman married a rich man, but refused to lead a frivolous life, plunging instead into activities that were centered on helping others. The book covers a period in which the face of the nation and the world was vastly altered. When Norman was not at Stieglitz's side supporting modern art, she was involved in causes of all sorts, mostly aimed at improving the lot of her fellow human beings. She knew everyone it seems, from Henry Miller to Eleanor Roosevelt, Nehru to Cartier Bresson--on and on the list goes. Her tastes were surprisingly catholic and she was generally open-minded. The fact that her marriage to a disturbed, wealthy man lasted so long is a tribute to one of her great gifts--a sympathetic nature. Her concern for others is not drowned in treacle; on the contrary, she is unusually direct and strong. Norman has lived with her eyes wide open. One senses she doesn't need our admiration or approval--her own sense of purpose rewarded her far beyond others' ability to do so. In sum, an engrossing life warmly and honestly relived here.

Pub Date: March 24th, 1987
Publisher: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich