Edie Sedgwick: a Troubled Beauty Essay

3965 Words May 5th, 2012 16 Pages
Edie Sedgwick was a short-lived socialite and actress that rose to fame in the 1960s. Beloved but misunderstood by all she met, her actions puzzled many throughout her life and have continued to fascinate since her untimely death in 1971 at a mere 28 years old. She was troubled throughout her life, constantly being placed under the care of various therapists and psychiatric hospitals, though doctors were never able to diagnose her erratic behavior. Due to her strict and sheltered upbringing, she did not make an independent social debut until she was 20 years old, but given the opportunity, her fame and influence skyrocketed. Despite her instability, she became an icon of her time and continues to inspire books and movies based on her short …show more content…
Her eldest sister, Alice (nicknamed “Saucie”) heard multiple rumors as to why Edie was taken out of school but knew it was because Edie had developed anorexia, and Saucie partially blamed it on their father, since they all learned to idolize him as children (Stein, 1982). According to Saucie,
In a way, my father was a model for Edie because he would eat such quantities; then he would burn it off with his exercises and swimming and riding. But Edie vomited it up. She would sit down to a very special meal which she herself would carefully choose and eat helping after helping of, course after course, excusing herself during the meal to go and be sick, to throw up what she had eaten so she could eat more. But nothing reached her stomach, or very little did. (Stein, 1982, p. 105)
The following year (1958), Edie was sent to St. Timothy’s school for girls across the country in Maryland (Painter & Weisman, 2006). Edie at first thrived at St. Timothy’s, excelling academically and becoming a member of the basketball team and class president, but her behavior started changing by the end of her first semester (Stein, 1982). She began disobeying her teachers, violently expressing her anger and starting feuds with and among fellow classmates (Stein, 1982). Edie was once again removed from the school by her parents during the spring term (Stein,

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