Read Of Woman Born: Motherhood as Experience and Institution by Adrienne Rich Free Online
Book Title: Of Woman Born: Motherhood as Experience and Institution|
The author of the book: Adrienne Rich
Date of issue: November 4th 1977
ISBN 13: 9780553200782
Format files: PDF
The size of the: 6.51 MB
Edition: Bantam Books
Read full description of the books Of Woman Born: Motherhood as Experience and Institution:This book is an essential read for anyone interested in feminist and or gender related issues. An absolute classic. Here are a few memorable excerpts:
1. "Partiarchy is the power of the fathers: a familial-social, ideological, political system in which men - by force, direct pressure, or through ritual, tradition, law, and language, customs, etiquette, education, and the division of labor, determine what part women shall or shall not play, and in which the female is everywhere subsumed under the male."
-a nice definition since so many fumble with it usually
2. "A crucial moment in human conscioussness, then, arrives when man discovers that it is he himself, not the moon of the spring rains or the spirits of the dead, who impregnates the woman; that the child she carries and gives birth to is his child, who can make him immortal, both mysticallyl, by propitiating the gods with prayers and sacrifices when he is dead, and concretely, by receiving the partimony from him. At this crossroads of sexual possession, property ownership, and the desire to transcend death, developed the institution we know: the present-day patriarchal family with its supernaturalizing the penis, its division of labor by gender, its emotional, physical, and material possessiveness, its idea of monogamous marriage until death (and its severe penalties for adultery by the wife), the "illegitimacy" of a child born outside wedlock, the economic dependency of women, the unpaid domestic services of the wife, the obedience of women and children to male authority, the imprinting and continuation of heterosexual roles"
3. "The pig, declared an unclean animal in the Koran and the Old Testament, was a reiterative figure in goddess - religion; the sow was sacred in Crete, sometimes appeared as an embodiment of Isis, was sacrificed at the feast of Aphrodite, and was a symbol of the Eleusinian cult of Demeter. "Wherever the eating of pork is forbidden and the pig is held to be unclean, we can be sure of its originally sacred character""
-something I never knew
4. "Women who refuse to become mothers are not merely emotionally suspect, but are dangerous. Not only do they refuse to continue the species; they also deprive society of its emotional leaven - the suffering of the mother"
5. "As her sons have seen her: the Mother in patriarchy: controlling, erotic, castrating, heart-suffering, guilt-ridden, and guilt-provoking; a marble brow, a huge breast, an avid cave; between her legs snakes, swamp-grass, or teeth; on her lap a helpless infant or a martyred son"
Read information about the authorAdrienne Rich (b. 1929). Born to a middle-class family, Rich was educated by her parents until she entered public school in the fourth grade. She graduated Phi Beta Kappa from Radcliffe College in 1951, the same year her first book of poems, A Change of World, appeared. That volume, chosen by W. H. Auden for the Yale Series of Younger Poets Award, and her next, The Diamond Cutters and Other Poems (1955), earned her a reputation as an elegant, controlled stylist.
In the 1960s, however, Rich began a dramatic shift away from her earlier mode as she took up political and feminist themes and stylistic experimentation in such works as Snapshots of a Daughter-in-Law (1963), The Necessities of Life (1966), Leaflets (1969), and The Will to Change (1971). In Diving into the Wreck (1973) and The Dream of a Common Language (1978), she continued to experiment with form and to deal with the experiences and aspirations of women from a feminist perspective.
In addition to her poetry, Rich has published many essays on poetry, feminism, motherhood, and lesbianism. Her recent collections include An Atlas of the Difficult World (1991) and Dark Fields of the Republic: Poems 1991-1995 (1995).
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