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In this book, Martha Nell Smith, a world-renowned critic on Emily Dickinson, provides a richly appreciative biographical and critical introduction to America's best-known woman poet. Smith recognises that interpretations of Dickinson have always stemmed from the dynamic exchange between readers' senses of the poet's life and the kind of literary art she produced, and her account builds on this tradition. Drawing on prominent critical views of Dickinson from the past century, including sentimental, modernist, new critical, psychological, feminist and postmodernist readings, she pulls together partial truths to create a more complete picture of the poet than any one of these schools of thought has provided. The book includes an interactive appendix focused on the Dickinson Electronic Archives, an online resource the author has been developing for the past ten years, together with teams of Dickinson critics, and markup and programming specialists.