Marilyn Monroe is the most famous, ubiquitous, and idolized woman of our modern age. An icon of physical beauty, sexuality, and the quintessentially American dream, Marilyn's legend continues to grow four decades after her death. MM:Personal is a new and illuminating look behind the veil of that legend, reproducing artifacts and documents - thought to have been lost since 1962 and never before revealed to the public - to clarify, qualify, or reverse many common conceptions about the blond bombshell.A Selected from more than 10,000 largely unseen and heretofore unpublished items that were stored in Marilyn's two personal file cabinets - the Rosetta Stones of Marilyn Monroe scholarship - the collection also draws from the important collections of Greg Schreiner and Scott Fortner. These documents, snapshots, letters, memorabilia, and ephemera are joined by the first account of Monroe's life since Gloria Steinem's Marilyn to be written by a feminist historian, bringing a depth of understanding previously unavailable to her life. New answers come to light, such as what the dimensions were of Marilyn's personal management of her public persona, Marilyn's relationship to the photographers with whom she worked, how sensitive she was to her fans, and the tenor of her marriages to Joe DiMaggio and Arthur Miller. MM:Personal promises to completely refocus how we view Marilyn's private life, personal relationships, and legacy.
Lois Banner is professor of history and gender studies at the University of Southern California. She is the author of numerous biographies and studies of women, including the classic American Beauty (Knopf, 1983). She was awarded the American Studies Association's Bode-Pearson Prize for lifetime achievement in 2005. Mark Anderson is an internationally known editorial and commercial photographer. He has contributed to domestic and international editions of Vanity Fair, Elle, Esquire, Gentlemen's Quarterly, and Vogue, and his work has appeared in major photograph exhibitions and books, most recently Dolce and Gabanna's Hollywood (Assouline, 2003).