THE WORLD OF LADY LAZARUS:
A Little Guide to the History and Metaphysics of the LADY LAZARUS Historical Fantasy Series
By Michele Lang
Copyright 2011 Michele Lang
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Introduction: The Big Idea Behind LADY LAZARUS
(essay first published at John Scalzi’s Whatever Blog on September 8, 2010 –
I first read the poem “Lady Lazarus” as a literal-minded freshman in college. I knew it was supposed to be an extended metaphor for Sylvia Plath’s suicide attempts and her fraught relationship with her father, but I preferred to read it straight up, as a revenge anthem of a Jewish woman who returns from the dead to kill the Nazis who had murdered her.