The title of "The Diary of a Provincial Lady" by E.M. Delafield explains the concept of this book very well; a diary in which the reader follows a cluThe title of "The Diary of a Provincial Lady" by E.M. Delafield explains the concept of this book very well; a diary in which the reader follows a clumsy provincial lady and her everyday life filled with simple duties as a mother, wife and friend, and the more, yet still simple, adventures of everyday life such as the sudden urge to buy dresses truly unfit for one and yet buying them, and the misadventures of dying one's hair.
“She is never alone when she has Her Books. Books, to her, are Friends. Give her Shakespeare or Jane Austen, Meredith or Hardy, and she is Lost - lost in a world of her own. She sleeps so little that most of her nights are spent reading.
Reading this was as simple as the structure of the diary itself; the grammar is never correct, yet always understandable like personal notes written in a hurry. Written in 1930 this feels almost as a forerunner to the very famous "Bridget Jones' Diary" by Helen Fielding with lots of the same themes in two different times. "The Diary of a Provincial Lady" is very amusing and witty with its many literary references (which can be seen in the quote above), buy underneath all this amusement lies a more critical feministic point of view which I enjoyed just as much. ...more
I the last couple of years I have been meaning to read "The Handmaid's Tale" by Margaret Atwood, so when I came across a cheap paperback edition I decI the last couple of years I have been meaning to read "The Handmaid's Tale" by Margaret Atwood, so when I came across a cheap paperback edition I decided to finally pick it up and read it. It was both everything and nothing I expected from it; I was expecting a dystopian tale of oppression of females, but I did not get the ending I was hoping for, however, I do believe the ending is rather realistic. It leaves a door open for a debate that is still going strong.
“But who can remember pain, once it’s over? All that remains of it is a shadow, not in the mind even, in the flesh. Pain marks you, but too deep to see. Out of sight, out of mind.”
I was expecting more depth the story, but I think this is to be found in the interpretation and symbolism. This part lingered in my mind for a very long time after I finished the last page, and so did the language: it was so vivid and poetic at times, it is sorrowful and reflects a life of survival in which there is not room for emotions and tears. This made the language the greatest surprise, which left me thinking how society can always try to oppress its people by rules and punishment, but one thing they cannot take away from the individual is the freedom of thoughts; one cannot control these, they wander to the far end of the world if they please, they make us the bird which can fly when the body is imprisoned in a cage set up by the power of others. The mind is the free spirit that keeps us alive with our hopes and dreams.
“We were the people who were not in the papers. We lived in the blank white spaces at the edges of print. It gave us more freedom. We lived in the gaps between the stories.” ...more