Sylvia Plath and the Fetishization of Suicide

  • Sarthak Sharma Hindu College


For generations of readers and critics Sylvia Plath’s suicide has been a symbolic event resulting from the same sadness that her art embodies, but isn’t that obvious? Don’t artists always live symbolic lives? Sylvia’s suicide very obviously affects our interpretation of her work, but the cult that surrounds Sylvia, her sadness, and her suicide reveal something about our society as a whole. It’s a truth we often shy away from, and that truth is that the artist is better dead than alive for a society that revels intensely in masochistic sadism.

The article draws in on that with the aid of Guru Dutt's classic Pyaasa.


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Author Biography

Sarthak Sharma, Hindu College

Sarthak Sharma is a writer and artist working towards creating a body of work that stretches beyond the confines of his own world and touches everybody equally.

He currently is pursuing a Master's in Filmmaking and works at Kunzum Bookstore.


1. Ludhianvi, Sahir. Selected Poems of Sahir Ludhianvi. Tr. Khwaja Tariq Mahmood. 2000.
2. Hughes, Frieda. Stonepicker and The Book of Mirrors. 2009.
How to Cite
Sharma, S. “Sylvia Plath and the Fetishization of Suicide”. Contemporary Literary Review India, Vol. 10, no. 4, Nov. 2023, pp. 203-10,

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