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Behind the Scenes: or, Thirty Years a Slave, and Four Years in the White House (Penguin Classics) (英語) ペーパーバック – 2005/7/26

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Originally published in 1868—when it was attacked as an “indecent book” authored by a “traitorous eavesdropper”—Behind the Scenes is the story of Elizabeth Keckley, who began her life as a slave and became a privileged witness to the presidency of Abraham Lincoln. Keckley bought her freedom at the age of thirty-seven and set up a successful dressmaking business in Washington, D.C. She became modiste to Mary Todd Lincoln and in time her friend and confidante, a relationship that continued after Lincoln’s assassination. In documenting that friendship—often using the First Lady’s own letters—Behind the Scenes fuses the slave narrative with the political memoir. It remains extraordinary for its poignancy, candor, and historical perspective.

  • First time in Penguin Classics


`Invaluable ... Elizabeth Keckley's memoir of her life as a White House dressmaker for Mary Todd Lincoln ... [is a] curious gem'New York Times Book Review --このテキストは、ペーパーバック版に関連付けられています。



  • ペーパーバック: 192ページ
  • 出版社: Penguin Classics (2005/7/26)
  • 言語: 英語
  • ISBN-10: 0143039245
  • ISBN-13: 978-0143039242
  • 発売日: 2005/7/26
  • 商品パッケージの寸法: 12.9 x 1.3 x 19.7 cm
  • おすすめ度: この商品の最初のレビューを書き込んでください。
  • Amazon 売れ筋ランキング: 洋書 - 1,667,014位 (洋書の売れ筋ランキングを見る)
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Amazon.com: 5つ星のうち HASH(0x7e6baa8c) 298 件のカスタマーレビュー
103 人中、103人の方が、「このレビューが参考になった」と投票しています。
5つ星のうち HASH(0x7e784918) Stepping back in time 2000/9/27
投稿者 Sandra Hendrickson - (Amazon.com)
形式: ペーパーバック
I was enthralled by every page of this book. I couldn't put it down and was disappointed when it ended. As I was reading the book, I felt like I was stepping back in time witnessing the ordinary, human, day-to-day life behind the historical events we studied in school.
The story was simple and yet it presented a very intimate glimpse into the genuine personalities of Abraham and Mary and the life the author shared with them. Elizabeth Keckley was not writing to impress anyone with her "insider" position in the White House, she was just sharing her story.
The stories about her life as a slave also offered the reader an opportunity to experience slavery through the eyes and heart of a slave.
How lucky we are that she wrote this book.
72 人中、71人の方が、「このレビューが参考になった」と投票しています。
投稿者 Ann Sherry - (Amazon.com)
形式: ペーパーバック
Well, you can't get closer to being in the Lincoln White House than this. The story of Mary Todd Lincoln's dressmaker is written by the seamstress herself, Mrs. Keckley. She gives a fine, but brief, narrative of herself - starting out as a slave, a brief marriage and eventually buying her own freedom from the talent of her needle. Selling dresses to the wealthiest women around, she eventually catches the interest of Mrs. Lincoln and becomes her dressmaker. Her interactions with the President up to his assassination, though few, are remarkable and give us another eye witness glimpse of the Personal Lincoln. Most interesting is her account of Mary Lincoln after leaving the White House. Detailed are Mary Todd's efforts to sell her dresses for income, with the assistance of Mrs. Keckley. She tells about Mrs. Lincoln traveling incognito, which is extremely interesting. Mrs. Keckley writes in a very educated manner and shows her caring self through her words. A short book, and nominally priced, it is good for pleasure reading or as a source book for researchers, containing information that may not be found elsewhere.
91 人中、88人の方が、「このレビューが参考になった」と投票しています。
5つ星のうち HASH(0x7e784da4) The controversial memoirs of Mrs. Lincoln's dressmaker 2011/2/9
投稿者 Patto - (Amazon.com)
形式: ペーパーバック Amazonで購入
Elizabeth Keckley's memoirs caused shock waves when they appeared in 1868. The press lambasted Keckley for daring to unveil the secrets of her betters. Mrs. Lincoln, who always called Elizabeth "my best and kindest friend," abruptly dropped her. And Lincoln's eldest son had the book suppressed.

Why Elizabeth Keckley wrote this intimate chronicle at the height of her involvement with Mary Lincoln is a puzzle. She thought she was justifying Mrs. Lincoln, whose erratic behavior was always under fire by observers and the press. We must read between the lines for insights into Keckley's motivation, and that's precisely what makes the book so fascinating.

Keckley revered President Lincoln as the liberator of her people. But she portrays Mary Lincoln as paranoid, jealous, capricious, extravagant and prone to hysterics. At the same time, Keckley shows great sympathy for Mrs. Lincoln's sufferings.

The memoirs begin with an account of Keckley's life as a slave and how she rose to become a fashionable dressmaker, able to buy freedom for herself and her son. As a free black in Washington, her talents and entrepreneurial spirit won her the patronage of the elite.

Eventually she became Mrs. Lincoln's dress designer, personal maid and confidant, heavily relied upon in every crisis. She also became an activist, organizing relief for penniless newly freed slaves.

What followed the memoirs? Troubles of every sort. Mrs. Lincoln was at one point committed to an insane asylum by her son. Keckley never benefited from her memoirs. She spent her last years in a home she herself had founded for destitute women, a picture of Mrs. Lincoln hanging in her room.

Elizabeth Keckley's autobiography is a remarkable document, and I heartily recommend it to anyone interested in Black history, the Civil War - or the complex psychology of human relationships.
41 人中、39人の方が、「このレビューが参考になった」と投票しています。
5つ星のうち HASH(0x7e784d8c) Beautifully Written! 2003/6/5
投稿者 S.H.CHU - (Amazon.com)
形式: ペーパーバック
I got a copy of this book from a book fair not on purpose. As a non-native English learner, what strikes me is the ability of Keckley to express rich emotions in very simple words and sentences. I always like reading first person narratives, fictions or true stories, but seldom find one as captivating as this. A five-star from me and it's a pity she didn't seem
to have written other books.
26 人中、25人の方が、「このレビューが参考になった」と投票しています。
5つ星のうち HASH(0x7e787270) Abe and Mary Lincoln from the view of Mary's modiste 2013/9/4
投稿者 Gayle - (Amazon.com)
形式: Kindle版 Amazonで購入
"Behind the Scenes" is a historical account of the Lincoln's White House. Elizabeth Keckley was part of this history. I am reading this as a follow up to " Mrs Lincoln's Dressmaker" which follows the main events of "Behind the Scenes " to the tee. Now that I know that and had to chose one book I would read " Mrs Lincoln's Dress maker" Would be my choice. I think Elizabeth Keckley's book is good but it tends to jump around . Both books give you an understanding of the relationship between the president and Mrs Lincoln as well a a look into the history of the time.
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