Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Kitchen Comfort

I am taking what comfort I can these days, where I can. One of the things I am taking comfort in is Doris Lessing's incredibly messy kitchen table. This picture is from an interview with the Nobel people after she won the prize in 2008.

In the interview, she described feminism in "those days", ie. the early 70s, as "exaggerated hysterical rubbish". This comment related to her description of one particular incident in Sweden in the 1970s when a woman approached her and said "I only read the blue notebook".

I enjoy The Golden Notebook - savour might be a better word - but I connected much more with her Jane Somers novels. Also, I highly recommend Mara and Dann. Really interesting speculative fiction.

In case you are wondering, about my opinion on feminism - I do not think it is hysterical rubbish. In fact, the more I work with young women, the more strongly I feel we have never needed feminism more in this world than we do at this point in time. Feminist consciousness - including the whole spectrum, extreme positions and all - has been a powerful force that continues to provoke people to re-examine assumptions about identities - and not only female identities. For example, I like to see blogs like this one, which examines stereotypes of masculinity and their effects on men's experience and identity.


Photo credit! Copyright © Nobel Web AB 2008. (http://nobelprize.org/nobel_prizes/literature/laureates/2007/lessing-photo.html)

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