Levy, Amy

(1861-1889)
   Born in London to a wealthy middle class AngloJewish family and educated at Brighton High School, she was the first Jewish student at Newnham College, Cambridge, though she left after four semesters. She contributed to the leading feminist and women's periodicals of her day, including Emily Faithfull's Victoria Magazine and Oscar Wilde's Woman's World. She wrote fiction and essays on the position of women within Judaism and showed a strong interest in socialism. Her novel Reuben Sachs (1999) was translated into German by Eleanor Marx, the daughter of Karl Marx. Levy suffered from severe depression since childhood, and this influenced her writing; she wrote more about the dark side of life. She committed suicide by inhaling charcoal fumes. Her poetry publications: Xantippe and Other Poems, 1881. A Minor Poet and Other Verse, 1884. A London Plane Tree and Other Poems, 1889. Some of her poems: "A Ballad of Religion and Marriage," "Alma Mater," "At a Dinner Party," "At Dawn," "In the Black Forest," "Oh, is It Love?" "Two Translations of Jehudah Halevi."
   Sources: Biography of Amy Levy (http://www.womenofbrighton.co.uk/amylevy.htm). Bread and Roses: An Anthology of Nineteenth- and Twentieth-Century Poetry by Women Writers. Diana Scott, ed. Virago Press, 1982. Dictionary of National Biography. Electronic Edition 1.1. Oxford University Press, 1997. Poems Between Women: Four Centuries of Love, Romantic Friendship, and Desire. Emma Donoghue, ed. Columbia University Press, 1997. The Columbia Granger's Index to Poetry. 11th ed. The Columbia Granger's World of Poetry, Columbia University Press, 2005 (http://www.columbiagrangers.org). The Complete Novels and Selected Writings of Amy Levy. Melvyn New, ed. University Press of Florida, 1993. The Oxford Companion to English Literature. 6th edition. Margaret Drabble, ed. Oxford University Press, 2000.

British and Irish poets. A biographical dictionary. . 2015.

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  • Levy, Amy — (1861 89)    British writer. Born in Clapham, she studied at Cambridge University. Her works include Xanthippe and Other Verse, A Minor Poet and Other Verse as well as Reuben Sachs: A Sketch …   Dictionary of Jewish Biography

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