Brain Pickings

Gertrude Stein Reads from The Making of Americans: A Rare Recording from 1934-1935


“More and more then every one comes to be clear to some one.”

A beloved writer, “reconstructionist,” and little-known author of delightful children’s books, Gertrude Stein endures as one of the most influential figures in modern literary history.

In this rare recording from the winter of 1934-1935, courtesy of my alma mater’s wonderful PennSound archive, Stein reads from her early novel The Making of Americans (UK; public library) — a pinnacle of her signature use of repetition as a sensemaking mechanism, written between 1902 and 1911 while Stein was in her late twenties and early thirties.

Repeating then is in every one, in every one their being and their feeling and their way of realizing everything and every one comes out of them in repeating. More and more then every one comes to be clear to some one.

Complement with Stein on understanding and joy, from another rare audio recording, and charming vintage children’s books.

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