Friday, March 06, 2015

Day 65 of Feminist Joys: Reading the Bell Jar

Sylvia Plath was a name I came across again and again on feminist blogs. Her poetry. Her tragic life. And perhaps more often, the ‘bell jar’. I finally read this novel. 

I was a little surprised at first, both at how trivial it was and at a very racist passage. But the strength of the book is in how true the protagonist’s voice rings, and how even the daily business of living can be too much for a young woman in a misogynistic society.
It wouldn't have made one scrap of difference to me, because wherever I sat -- on the deck of a ship or at a street cafe in Paris or Bangkok -- I would be sitting under the same glass bell jar, stewing in my own sour air.... 
The air of the bell jar wadded round me and I couldn't stir.
Once, when describing how I feel when I'm battling food my body refuses to accept (I'm sensitive to gluten and lactose), I said to the Guy, "It's like I'm behind these glass walls." I guess there's more than one reason for feeling this way.

It's only Rs 94 on the Kindle right now if you want to read it. Also check out this comic based on a quote from the book.

Edited to add: This post had been messed up for some reason -- the first two paragraphs had got deleted. Added them back now. Sorry.

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