Read A Woman Speaks: The Lectures, Seminars and Interviews of Anaïs Nin by Anaïs Nin Free Online
Book Title: A Woman Speaks: The Lectures, Seminars and Interviews of Anaïs Nin|
The author of the book: Anaïs Nin
ISBN 13: 9780804006941
Edition: Swallow Press
Date of issue: January 1st 1975
Format files: PDF
The size of the: 4.52 MB
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Reader ratings: 6.6
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A very thoughtful book indeed! What I liked most about the book is the voice that is so much hers. The thoughts expressed on a broad range of issues are heartfelt and lived. It is not like one theory is talking to another; it is more a zen-like person speaking to us a friend, and sharing what seems worth sharing. The book has this air about it.
There is a lot in it that is relevant event today. There are lectures, essays, and conversations on literature, gender, sexuality and culture. Speaking about feminism, Anais insists that women, instead of fighting and blaming men, should work on themselves, there is no point in dwelling a negative space. Women should write, paint, sing, dance, they should live more fully, and doing this will change lives of women in a deep way; such a change will contribute to all life. As one reads these thoughts, one sees how this can be used and applied in all those situations where one group feels oppressed by the other, to any kind of politics that creates minorities of varied sorts in society. We gain more by sharing, by giving, by becoming more positive. However, one can take a lifetime to understand these thoughts and implement in real life.
She speaks a lot about culture and how it works through us, how we can 'undone' its aspects which chain and, at times, damage us. She mentions how certain notions, even certain words are used to discredit and dismiss more natural and organic ways of being, or at least, she suggests that we are molded in ways that take us away from things that are central to us as human beings. She goes on to talk about these issues, for instance, when she reflects on rational /irrational, man/woman and particularly about the objective and subjective human experience– the ways in which the objective is consuming everything that is subjective– that goes in the realm of dreams, of unknown territories. This according to Anais, indulgence in such delusions, is an immense folly of modern times. She then goes on to list more explanations of how it narrows down innate human possibilities and potentials. The creative will is hampered by this cloying insistence on the objective experience in all spheres of life, for instance, in regard to language one is taught to be objective and use language clearly and simply. In order to express a certain color, a certain quality Anais used the word 'rutilant'. She is harshly criticized for this transgression. She rejects these pragmaticisms– this not only confined to writing but such as approach seeps into all spheres of human life. We cannot and should not fix and numb ourselves by these manipulative impositions forwarded as biblical truths.
The most impressive aspect of these talks and thoughts is that one recognizes the deeply felt truth of her words. Clearly, one can reject them as mystical or too wise of the real world. But just a little reflection makes one see what she is getting at. She does not want to sanitize ambivalences, contradictions, irrationalities in human-beings; she just seeks to harmonize them; annihilating them is not only damaging, it will make us 'less' and, possibly, further neurosis of our age.
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Read information about the authorFrench-born novelist, passionate eroticist and short story writer, who gained international fame with her journals. Spanning the years from 1931 to 1974, they give an account of one woman's voyage of self-discovery. "It's all right for a woman to be, above all, human. I am a woman first of all." (from The Diary of Anaïs Nin, vol. I, 1966)
Anaïs Nin was largely ignored until the 1960s. Today she is regarded as one of the leading female writers of the 20th century and a source of inspiration for women challenging conventionally defined gender roles.