Adah Menken, an actress "not known for her talent, but rather for her frenetic energy, her charismatic presence, and
Augustine Daly says in his introductory comments on this brief autobiographical sketch by Menken, "Disjointed as the memoranda are, they give for all that, when her excusable vanity permits, and honest revelation of her own feelings."
In a particularly interesting section of this autobiographical sketch, Menken writes of her "two souls" in a way that resonates with Walt Whitman's own meditation on the difference between the public self and the private self in such poems as "Song of Myself" and "That Shadow, My Likeness." Menken writes, "I have always believed myself to be possessed of two souls, one that lives on the surface of life, pleasing and pleased; the other as deep and as unfathomable as the ocean; a mystery to me and all who know me."
Menken claims in this article to have been born in Bordeaux, France, and to have lived as a child in Cuba before being brought to New Orleans.
Daly writes the preface to this autobiographical sketch by Menken. Daly says that he came into possession of these notes about Menken in 1862, when he was writing a weekly column about the theater for the New York _Courier_. He also claims that Menken's real name was Adelaide McCord.
Menken writes a brief (and, at times, fictionalized) autobiographical sketch about her life.
Augustin Daly says in his introductory comments on this brief autobiographical sketch by Menken, "Disjointed as the memoranda are, they give for all that, when her excusable vanity permits, and honest revelation of her own feelings."
Augustin Daly writes of Menken's life and death, "Menken's crime was weakness of heart! There never was so weak a woman. And with this feminine feeling came its attendant fault, reckless generosity! . . . Paris may have changed her, but I doubt it much; and yet I read in the Figaro that scarcely ten people followed her to the grave, and among these, not a writer, not an actress. 'Where,' asks the Cynic, 'Where were all her comrades; all the journalists who were never tired of praising her beauty and her talent?'" (2-3)
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