"I would never have agreed with Robert Lowell’s comment about the “tranquillized Fifties.” Maybe that’s because I grew up in New York City, which always seemed to pulse with unruly energy. Or maybe it’s because I went to a special high school—Hunter College High School for “gifted” girls, where a clear majority of the students were as unruly, as restless and aspirational, as I was. And maybe, too, because I came from an immigrant family (Niçoise, Sicilian, Russian), I never felt like a regular rule-abiding American. And that was a problem in the supposedly placid (though witch-hunting) McCarthyite ’50s."
Unruly girl-poets in the '50s