Howdy, friends! It’s lovely, sunny, and warm, so I’m off on a run. Here are some interesting tidbits I found elsewhere on the world-wide timewasting web for those of you not enjoying perfect autumn weather today:
- Via RealClearBooks, Eleanor Barkhorn on “What Jeffrey Eugenidies Doesn’t Understand About Women,” after reading his new book, The Marriage Plot: “There’s one way, however, in which [the protagonist] Madeleine defies believability: She has no true female friends. Yes, she has roommates and a sister with whom she once had ‘heavy’ emotional conversations, but these relationships are characterized more by spite than affection. And, sadly, The Marriage Plot is just the latest story to forget to give its heroine friends. There are countless other Madeleines in modern-day literature and film: smart, self-assured women who have all the trappings of contemporary womanhood except a group of friends to confide in.” Have you noticed this about recent books and films? I have to say that I hadn’t until Barkhorn pointed it out. She concludes, “The great irony, of course, is that the old-fashioned, marriage-plot-bound books that Eugenides attempts to modernize in his new novel actually do a better job of portraying female friendship than The Marriage Plot.” I think I may read this anyway–a library codex copy of the book, of course–because I’m a huge fan of “marriage plot” authors like Jane Austen and the many Brontes, but Barkhorn makes an interesting argument here.
- Isn’t it cute when right-wing religious nuts start condemning each other to hell? Robert Jeffress vs. Bill Donahue, plus all Catholics, Mormons, Buddhists, Hindus, and Muslims, of course. Taking victimology to new heights, Anita Perry cries that her handsome husband Rick has been “brutalized . . . because of his faith.” Mark my words: the majority of Americans will not reward this kind of religious pride, which just stinks of hubris and un-neighborliness. Even if they privately agree with him, Americans are fundamentally uncomfortable with the Jeffress style of public religious condemnation.
- 1970s flashback: Do any of you remember the sensational book Sybil, about the girl with multiple personality disorder? Continue Reading »