'Recent decades have seen the rise of a modern publishing phenomenon: mass public participation in the production and consumption of various forms of Life Writing.
Biography has been "democratised". The growth and diversity in the informal production of Biography underlines the confidence with which it is produced, effectually a statement that "my life is worth telling too." Similarly the commercially produced biographical product is subject to media and public scrutiny as never before, dissected for factuality and fairness.
There is an expectation that a subject, or a subject‟s friends, enemies, or relatives, have a right of reply to the printed word. The challenge to academics and biographers then, is to admit that the authorial voice is not tenured, and that a greater collaborative approach must be taken which shares power over the writing of a life.' (Author's abstract)