The Artist Birthday Series

Djuna Barnes

When she was a young reporter struggling to support her family, she often created what she called her “stunt stories,” a form of performance art with a journalistic flair. She staged such things as being rescued by a fireman from an upper story of a skyscraper, or entering the cage of a gorilla at the zoo. Her best known stunt however, was allowing herself to be force-fed in order to write honestly about the experience, in order to bring attention to the hunger-striking women’s suffrage activists.

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