Martinson, Deborah 1946–
Martinson, Deborah 1946–
PERSONAL: Born 1946. Education: University of Southern California, Ph.D.
CAREER: Occidental College, Los Angeles, CA, associate professor of English writing and women's studies.
In the Presence of Audience: The Self in Diaries and Fiction, Ohio State University Press (Columbus, OH), 2003.
SIDELIGHTS: Deborah Martinson researches the relationship between biography/autobiography and literature. Her first publication, In the Presence of Audience: The Self in Diaries and Fiction, analyzes the diaries of modernist British women writers, including Virginia Woolf, Katherine Mansfield, and Violet Hunt, who knew that their husbands were also reading what they wrote. Carol Holly in English literature in Transition believed that Martinson "successfully lays out the arguments to be addressed" and "does a thorough job of identifying the goals and methodology of the book."
Martinson's second publication, Lillian Hellman: A Life with Foxes and Scoundrels, is a biography of the famed, perhaps infamous, twentieth-century playwright and memoirist. With complete access to Hellman's estate, Martinson's biography covers her wide-ranging life, including her confused family life, radical political views, sex life, and even her involvement with the FBI and McCarthyism. Writing in the Library Journal, Carol J. Binkowski lauded the "impressive research," noting that Martinson "presents a richly thorough, sometimes somber, and fairly objective portrait of an enigmatic individual." Ann J. Loftin, reviewing the book for the Wilson Quarterly, called it "a realistically complex portrait." A reviewer in Publishers Weekly believed that Martinson "excels in evoking Hellman's forceful presence" and "conscientiously covers the basics."
BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:
Booklist, November 15, 2005, Donna Seaman, review of Lillian Hellman: A Life with Foxes and Scoundrels, p. 14.
Economist, December 17, 2005, review of Lillian Hellman, p. 83.
English Literature in Transition, 1880–1920, summer, 2004, Carol Holly, review of In the Presence of Audience: The Self in Diaries and Fiction, p. 349.
Harper's, December, 2005, John Leonard, review of Lillian Hellman, p. 85.
Kirkus Reviews, November 1, 2005, review of Lillian Hellman, p. 1175.
Library Journal, December 1, 2005, Carol J. Binkowski, review of Lillian Hellman, p. 132.
Publishers Weekly, October 24, 2005, review of Lillian Hellman, p. 52.
Wilson Quarterly, winter, 2006, Ann J. Loftin, review of Lillian Hellman, p. 99.
Occidental College Web site, http://www.oxy.edu/ (February 22, 2006), author profile.