I bumped this up to a 5 as I ve been thinking about it since I finished it Levy explains why in her childhood no one in her family was capable of putting the lid back on any jar of bottle, as they were living in exile, and thus their kitchen was in a permanent state of metaphoric squalor they could do nothing about And plenty of other lovely bits in this small book Her description of motherhood is hilarious and harsh and so true.
I m probably an awful listener because I never listen to recommendations about books, never It s just something special I m looking for in books and people don t always know what it is and I can t usually explain it A colleague of mine recommended Deborah Levy s novels again and again and I never considered reading them even for twenty seconds because I m in a big non fiction period Then walking out of a book store last month I looked at my pile of five books by favourite writers and I picked that one up on a whim and half guiltily because I d like to introduce new names to my shelves I ve spent 5 days reading this skinny thing only because I wanted it to last longer I ve had the great luck to read some remarkable books in 2016 and this is one of the best Its language is so delicious and deliriously simple It tells a story about apartheid, confusion, childhood desires and f I was frustrated by Political Purpose, the opening chapter of Deborah Levy s four part memoir a work which some regard as a feminist response to Orwell s Why I Write I found it hard going, pretentious, and opaque Could you just get to the point, I wondered Well, Levy does eventually manage to do that sort of One spring, she writes, life was very hard , and its difficulty was often most apparent to her when she was standing on an ascending escalator Something about being moved passively upwards would cause her to cry, almost to the point of sobbing A good part of her trouble was related to her having been submerged in the role of mother for years Motherhood is a qualitatively different experience from fatherhood, she writes, and it is not uncommon for women to cancel their own desires According to Marguerite Duras, whom Levy quotes, being a mother means t In his essay Why I write which I confess I have not read , George Orwell identifies four motives for writing sheer egoism, aesthetic enthusiasm, historical impulse and political purpose Here, in the first of a planned trilogy of autobiographical essays memoirs, Deborah Levy takes those four motivations and responds to them via episodes from her own life.
The book consists of four short essays each with the title of one of Orwell s motivations In Political Purpose , set in Majorca where Levy has gone for respite because she keeps crying on the way up escalators, we read about the suburb of femininity and about motherhood but we also learn about Levy s earlier meeting with a Polish director who advises one of her students thatto speak up is not a Levy is one of my all time favorite fiction writers, but I have never really been able to get into her non fiction or, for that matter, her plays which is odd, since theatre is my field That said, I really enjoyed this mash up of autobiography and justice for writing, which perhaps has in common with her fiction than I first supposed I could wax on about the specifics, but I m going to be lazy and just reference my friend Neil s review, which says everything and I could would, and much eloquently succinctly
Just incredible Review to follow.
Å Things I Don't Want to Know: On Writing ê ge enlerde yk lerini okuou um levy nin son derece zg n, i ten anlat s orta ya ta i ine d t bunal mdan kurtulmak i in gitti i mallorca da ba lay p ocuklu unun g ney afrika s na, oradan g t kleri ingiltere ye, oradan da tekrar mallorca ya ba lan yor neredeyse kurmaca denecek kadar iyi ba lanm an lar ve d nceler kad nl ktan, annelikten yola k p rk l a, i ili e, yazar olmaya kadar uzan yor ok sade, ok naif zellikle ocuklu unu anlatt b l m bir novella say l r.
I have not read any of Levy s fiction, but this short autobiographical book was a good introduction to her writing The section on her childhood in South Africa was especially good.
Having said that the book is concentrated literary goodness And expands my knowledge and wisdom by a magical transference I will never again see Barby dolls, budgerigars, soft toys, door handles or for that matter peoples obsession with kitty movies on Youtube in the same light again Its refraction of the child s intellect gives me respect for the naughtiness of children Its descriptions of black people in South Africa combines human respect, empathy and profound outrage in simple phrases and descriptions Descr When Orwell Described Sheer Egoism As A Necessary Quality For A Writer, He Was Not Thinking About The Sheer Egoism Of A Female Writer Even The Most Arrogant Female Writer Has To Work Over Time To Build An Ego That Is Robust Enough To Get Her Through January, Never Mind All The Way To December Deborah à read â Things I Don't Want to Know: On Writing by Deborah Levy è Levy