Gertrude Stein’s Buried Beliefs
THE SOURCE: “The Strange Politics of Gertrude Stein” by Barbara Will, in Humanities, March–April 2012.
Most bookworms know the American writer Gertrude Stein (1874–1946) as the pen behind some of the most original modernist literature of the early 20th century, as an early collector of avant-garde art, and as a lesbian unafraid to acknowledge her long-term partner. Less known is the author’s enthusiasm for the collaborationist Vichy regime that during World War II ruled part of France, the country where Stein spent most of her adult life. A recent exhibition of the Stein family’s art collection at New York City’s Metropolitan Museum of Art failed to note that the author’s portion of the collection owed its survival in Nazi-occupied Paris to her Vichy contacts until a public outcry forced curators to make revisions.
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