Letter from Mina Loy to Mabel Dodge: Ca. 1914

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Beinecke_DL_9999034.pdf

Dublin Core

Title

Letter from Mina Loy to Mabel Dodge: Ca. 1914

Subject

Sex, Gender, Marriage, and the New Woman

Description

Mina Loy’s praises of Dodge illustrate the level of support that Dodge provided her throughout her struggles as a mother and an artist in Europe. By using her wealth and her welcoming nature, Dodge was able to support Loy like she did other artists in a way that is unique and important for Bohemians like Loy to reach the mainstream with their work. Loy says to Dodge that “You are the only woman so evolved,” which shows how much Loy values Dodge as an inspiration for herself. Barnet even comments that “It wasn’t until she [Loy] met the beguiling Mabel Dodge… that her life began to brighten up” (21). In a way, Dodge “groomed” Loy in her beliefs on the idea of the New Woman, and Loy ran with it. Dodge’s influence can be seen throughout Loy’s poetry and plays. Barnet also notes that Dodge, “fed her [Loy] books on Freud, Buddhism, telepathy, and tarot” (22). Loy was not the only artist who Dodge worked to promote, but she is a marvelous example of how Dodge worked to promote those who she found to be free thinking and modernist like herself. Loy would go on to be a predominant figure in the development of Feminist concepts, so it’s extremely telling that she is asking Dodge, “Do tell me what are you making of feminism?” Loy allowing Dodge into her confidence conveys how Dodge’s ‘brand” of feminism was radical for early 20th century America.

Barnet, Andrea. All Night Party: The Women of Bohemia Greenwich Village and
Harlem. Chapel Hill: Algonquin Books, 2004. Print.

Loy, Mina. Letter to Mabel Dodge. 1914. MS. Mabel Dodge Luhan Collection.
Beinecke Library, New Haven.

Creator

Mina Loy

Source

Mabel Dodge Luhan Collection

Publisher

Beinecke Library

Date

1914

Contributor

Mabel Dodge

Rights

Mabel Dodge Luhan Collection

Format

Image of written letter

Language

English

Type

Correspondence

Text Item Type Metadata

Text

My darling Moose—
do write to me-- you are the only woman yet evolved-- you could quite imagine not being here-- but your intuition will tell you that there is a state of annihilation-- Waiting for war-- while war is alive-- there is rain and still Germans and repercussion of the earthquakes we are holding our breath—and the government is measuring for it and a rebellious shill-shally—very tactfully—and everyone is dreaming of explosions—I loved the eyes in your article on War. They were so true—but I don’t know yet what to think of the women’s war on war—I may be able to decide on it after this all is over—I think I am safe in saying that there is a simply personality for the burying of negatives. That has not undergone metamorphosis during the last six months—when the tension is relaxed shell we reach to our own selves—shell we have become something new—or shall we hide no way of fitting in anywhere? I have written to you twice—I want to hear from you. I want to see you and love so afraid of audiences—I’ve got the artist in my blood—and the only artist got me in his show. If people realized how much too delighted they are to be quarreled with—and I don’t describe to you my own defeat in the sex war—you write about feminine pride of which I haven’t a idea—and have a fundamental masculine quality that ascribes to deserve appreciation. Do tell me what your[sic] are making of feminism? I heard you were interested—have you any idea what directed the sex must be showed—psychologically I mean—bread and butter bores me rather do write Moose – I haven’t a wise companion for the moment—entirely dependent on myself for everything and my mind is half the time immersed in wounds—Red Cross is being feverishly instigated in a subterraneous fashion—while the papers continue claiming that the school have been commandeered for hospitals! By the way of the Feminist Trade part I found the destruction of inequality—so daring down you think had been suggested by some other women all those years ago—see I feel rather hopeless of devotion to the women cause—slaves will believe that chains are protectors for the coward well Frances Stevens—writes there are some of us over here that all love is equal. She deserves to marry a man with a comfortable income. She was having original mysteries “over Mrs. Sanger’s “preventative propaganda” of course that all nothing and yet that’s all it is the more is spiritual affects us. What’s happened to Carlos—I want to hear something about Neith?


Loy, Mina. Letter to Mabel Dodge. 1914. MS. Mabel Dodge Luhan Collection.
Beinecke Library, New Haven.

Original Format

Written Letter