Stevie Smith

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Standard Name: Smith, Stevie
Birth Name: Florence Margaret Smith
Nickname: Peggy
Nickname: Stevie
Pseudonym: S. S.
SS , publishing in the mid twentieth century, was a poet who is hard to categorise. All of her works—poetry, novels, stories, essays, reviews, a radio play, and her inimitable drawings— have a quirkiness, a pretence of naivete which masks an unyielding and uncomforting view of life. All of them, too, are based on her own life and the lives of her friends: the last characteristic brought a number of difficulties like resentment and threats of libel actions.
Photograph of a circular blue English Heritage plaque in the brick wall of Smith's "house of female habitation" in Palmers Green. It reads: "Stevie Smith, 1902-1971, Poet lived here 1906-1971."
"Stevie Smith" Retrieved from https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/c/cc/STEVIE_SMITH_1902-1971_Poet_lived_here_1906-1971.jpg/768px-STEVIE_SMITH_1902-1971_Poet_lived_here_1906-1971.jpg. This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International license.
Stevie Smith
Black-and-white photo of Stevie Smith sitting in a park, 1954. Looking off-camera, she wears a white top, her arms are crossed in front of            her, and she holds a li cigarette in her hand.
"Stevie Smith" by Hulton Deutsch/Contributor, 1954-01-01. Retrieved from https://www.gettyimages.co.uk/detail/news-photo/the-english-poet-and-novelist-stevie-smith-sits-smoking-in-news-photo/613503446. This image is licensed under the GETTY IMAGES CONTENT LICENCE AGREEMENT.

Connections

Connections Sort descending Author name Excerpt
Anthologization Wendy Cope
The Muse Strikes Back: A Poetic Response by Women to Men, edited by Katherine McAlpine and Gail White , included no less than six items from WC .
She is one of only five...
Cultural formation Barbara Pym
As for marriage, BP 's involvements with men as a student must have been to some extent influenced by social pressure to marry. She felt badly let down when Henry Harvey decided to wed another...
Education Stella Gibbons
At the time SG attended the school, its headmistress was Dr Sophie Bryant , a suffragist, political campaigner for Irish Home Rule, and the first British woman to receive a doctorate in science. SG wrote...
Family and Intimate relationships Olivia Manning
They met and married within a few weeks. Reggie Smith, who was home on leave from a job in Bucharest, was a socialist, a charmer, a philanderer, and a feminist (who was later to edit...
Family and Intimate relationships Ivy Compton-Burnett
But they lived as a couple. ICB distrusted marriage and advised her women friends not to marry if they could avoid it; she also believed that most relationships evolve into a domination of the weaker...
Friends, Associates Olivia Manning
OM 's early friends included Celia Jordan . She met Stevie Smith in 1937, after each had a novel come out from the same publisher within months of each other. A close friendship developed which...
Friends, Associates Rosita Forbes
She apparently had a friendly, teasing relationship while journeying with Ahmed Hassanein , who went with her to Kufra but who was not, it seems, the creative mind behind the journey. Magazine publisher Sir Neville Pearson
Friends, Associates Rumer Godden
RG preserved her friendship with the director Jean Renoir from the time that he filmed her novel The River. After moving to Highgate she became friendly with the writer Stevie Smith (whom she calls...
Friends, Associates Ivy Compton-Burnett
Her relationship with a close woman friend, Stevie Smith , became the subject of a book by a younger friend, Kay Dick , in 1971.
Friends, Associates Betty Miller
BM 's friends included Olivia Manning , Rosamond Lehmann , Stevie Smith , Inez Holden , Viola Meynell , and Eleanor Farjeon .
Miller, Sarah, and Betty Miller. “Introduction”. On the Side of the Angels, Virago, 1985, p. vii - xviii.
xv
In wartime she met and immediately took to Adrian Stephen ,...
Friends, Associates Elizabeth Jane Howard
Her friends during the 1950s included Stephen and Natasha Spender , Alec Waugh , Margaret Lane , Malcolm Sargent , and Joyce Grenfell . She also met Cyril Connolly , Olivia Manning , Stevie Smith
Friends, Associates Naomi Mitchison
NM 's adult friends included artists and writers such as Gertrude Hermes , Storm Jameson , Goldie Lowes Dickinson , Julian Trevelyan , Gerald Heard , and Rudi Messel . Among the close friends were...
Friends, Associates Patricia Beer
PB met her fellow-poet Stevie Smith late in Smith's life, and developed a friendship which, though not close,
Mullan, John. “Obituary: Patricia Beer”. The Guardian, p. 18.
18
she much valued.
Friends, Associates Penelope Fitzgerald
PF was a friend of L. P. Hartley and of Stevie Smith , both of whom she met when they contributed to World Review, of which she and her husband were editors. Her sudden...
Friends, Associates Cecily Mackworth
Other friendships made now or later included many with distinguished women, like Ivy Compton-Burnett (whom she found kinder to me than she apparently was to most other people),
Mackworth, Cecily. Ends of the World. Carcanet, 1987.
112
and Stevie Smith , whom...

Timeline

1866
The Royal Society of Arts established a scheme (believed to be the first in the world) for setting up commemorative plaques on buildings associated with famous people.
Quinn, Ben. “Plaque blues. Cuts hit heritage scheme”. Guardian Weekly, p. 16.
January 1930
International Women's News began publication.
Autumn1945
The second number of Orion. A Miscellany appeared: Rosamond Lehmann was one of the editors, along with C. Day Lewis and Edwin Muir .
1965
Giles Gordon did a series of interviews for The Scotsman with female authors: a species of writer that at the time wasn't particularly recognised, although it certainly had been in the previous century.
May 1978
Virago Press issued its first Virago Modern Classics, a historically important series most though not all of which were novels.
10 September 2003
Guardian Unlimited Books named as Site of the Week a website entitled Poetry Landmarks of Britain: a map of poetic assocations plotted on an interactive map of Britain, searchable by region or category.