QOTD (2009-09-25)

Wikipedia can often be intriguingly and entertainingly blunt. On Chopin’s The Awakening:

Kate Chopin did not write another novel after The Awakening and had understandable difficulty in trying to publish stories after its publication.

That’s so blunt, so depressing, and so no-nonsense about the hostile attitude towards women writers at the turn of the 20th century. It’s even almost dismissive, though I presume whichever anonymous Wikipedia contributor wrote the sentence didn’t mean it that way. Women’s literature strikes me so much as a historical narrative of struggle (as a side note, I need to stop with this “historical narrative” thing. Someone accused me of Whiggishness the other day). And if there is anything particularly dispiriting about the struggle of a group with less power against a group with more, it’s that there is so often this assumption (even from the powerless group itself) that however hard they fight, it is not going to be possible to win. “Understandable difficulty”… what an assumption. What an assumption of hopelessness.

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