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FREE READ ê RANDARENEWABLES.CO.UK ó Doris Lessing Lessing's powerful and liberating feminist classic now available in a beautiful trade paperback. Dear class Welcome to an exclusive Goodreads seminar on Doris Lessing’s classic 1962 novel The Golden Notebook Let’s start with a uiz shall we 1 What’s the best reason for reading this bookA It’s a feminist classic and still speaks to feminists – male and female – todayB It’s a seminal contemporary novel and its challenging structure – there’s a traditional novel about a London writer named Anna Wulf interspersed with four notebooks that individually address Anna’s various interests growing up in Africa Communism trying to write a second book after a very successful first one daily life dreams and psychoanalysis – still feels bold half a century laterC Lessing won the Nobel Prize for Literature and her crotchety response to journalists when she heard about it remains pricelessD The book addresses big uestions like What happens when we become disillusioned with our political ideals How do we reconcile the various parts of ourselves sexual being responsible parent sympathetic partner loyal friend concerned global citizen Can we integrate them How do we define a “good” person and why is a good man so damn hard to findE All of the above Answer E2 It’s a long book well over 600 pages Does it need to be that longA Yes Every sentence is perfect There’s no repetition It’s very tidy I don’t know why you’re even asking this uestion Shame on youB God no But neither art nor life are clean with all the edges folded neatly Lessing understands this Art can get messy reuiring sketches multiple drafts thumb prints in the margins Family life can seethe with resentments and bitterness like a pot that’s boiled over on the stove And sex and relationships Sheesh Let’s be honest We’re not always rational in those departments We can find ourselves dating or sleeping with the same sort of person for all sorts of f cked up reasons We make mistakes That’s the human condition So writing about all of that has to be messy too Besides it seems that Lessing penned “the well written” novel before this She’s trying something new C I suppose not But imagine being her editor I can see Lessing fighting to include even the difficult earnest rambling passages And there are uite a fewD It’s not really that long And flipping back to the contents page which tells you how long each chapter is is handy Pro tip the chapters tend to get shorter as the book progresses And there are playful connections BETWEEN the sections which turn you into a literary detective It's sort of fun Answer B half marks for C andor D3 This book has a reputation for being serious Is there any humourA No Lessing deals with Communism art a possible nervous breakdown class colonialism in Africa and the uneasy war between the sexes in the 1940s and 50s Those are serious subjects B Um you’re in the literature section The humour section is in another part of the storeC So now you’re in the humour section I recommend Amy Poehler’s Yes Please and Mindy Kaling’s Why Not Me They’re both funny but they’re also very real oh sorryD Hell yes There are a couple of hilarious scenes of Anna meeting with TV and movie people who want to adapt her best selling first novel for another medium and of course have no idea what her book’s about and want to completely alter it into something sanitized and safe And there are some horrible funny examples of earnest Communist themed fiction that Anna has to consider for publication which contributes to her eventually leaving the party Answer D4 What’s the most shocking seuence to a reader todayA The scenes where Annaalter ego Ella thinks only of pleasing a man B The continual discussion about the lack of “real men” and the dismissive attitude towards homosexualityC The tampon scene D The stilted conversations between Anna and her friend Molly E The frank talk about vaginal vs clitoral orgasms and having orgasms while in love with one's partner Answer “Shocking” is a strong word but any of the above were surprising in different ways5 Will you read books by Doris LessingA Yes I want to read her five novel Children Of Violence series which seems to deal with some of the same themes as The Golden Notebook I'm also keen to read her popular first book The Grass Is Singing which is set in Southern Rhodesia now Zimbabwe and put her on the map I'm pretty sure there are parallels between this book and the fictional book Anna wrote in NotebookB Yes I’m moderately curious about her science fiction Clearly her uest for answers extended beyond our planet But her five volume Canopus In Argos series is hard to find even in good bookstores and libraries Fun fact she collaborated with Philip Glass on operas based on two of these booksC Yes Since The Golden Notebook deals with “reality vs art” I’m curious about the facts of Lessing’s life which she revealed in a series of memoirs and autobiographies Note Lessing called her 1974 sci fi dystopia Memoirs Of A Survivor an “attempt at an autobiography” D Yes Lessing also published several volumes of short stories most famously To Room Nineteen which deals with open relationships another theme of this book Lessing even wrote books under a pseudonym see The Diaries Of Jane SomersE No This book gave me a headache and I found the central character a whiny privileged white woman going on about first world problems Answer A B C and D are all fine And I totally understand E Enjoy

FREE DOWNLOAD The Golden Notebook

DOWNLOAD Ã The Golden Notebook Ë Lessing's powerful and liberating feminist classic now available in a beautiful trade paperback edition Alternating between a conventional novel involving Anna and her friend Molly and Anna's journal entries the notebooks reflect various aspects of Anna's personal and political upheavals Journal entries the notebooks reflect various aspects of Anna's personal and political upheavals. You’re afraid it’ll be like if you organized your recipes by emotion All color coding and modernism You’re intimidated It sounds hard But people never mention how horny Doris Lessing is There’s something about a man with a whacking great erection she says that it’s hard to resist Woman is horny Have you read Adore Holy shit it’s literally the plot of Motherlover by Lonely IslandI mean it’s Anna Wulf says that about the erections not Lessing Same thing but we’ll get to that Anna also says that every encounter with a person seems like crossing a mined field and one of the many things that make Doris Lessing special is her ability to map each mine She has the best social I since Tolstoy She has this way of breaking down interactions between people what they’re saying and why they’re saying it and the way a little tilt of the head can change their meaning entirely She often caps it off by saying simply that two characters are liking or not liking each other and I love how she points that out all these subtle maneuvers and at the end we either like each other or we don’tAnna Wulf is a novelist and since we were all intimidated by the plot and the notebooks and what have you here’s the spoiler free plot structure In the present day a framing story called Free Women Anna’s having an affair with a married man Michael raising her daughter dealing with her best friend Molly’s ex husband Richard their daughter Tommy and Richard’s new wife Marion Anna can’t come up with another novel but she keeps a diary split into four facets and in her own words A black notebook which is to do with Anna Wolf the writer and is largely set in the past in Africa and is my favorite; a red notebook concerned with politics and a little boring; a yellow notebook in which I make stories out of my experience; and a blue notebook which tries to be a diary The secret of this book is that you don’t have to remember any of this It doesn’t matter That yellow notebook is the beginnings of a novel starring Ella who’s a semiautobiographical stand in for Anna who’s a stand in for Lessing and you know what you’ll get the idea Lessing is doing the fragmented chronology of modernism; the color coding is just for you in case it helps you keep it all straight She does it because she’s nice Why the four notebooks she is asked What would happen if you had one big book without all those divisions and brackets and special writing And Anna replies I’ve told you chaos lol suck it Joyce probably about to color code something We could wish some of those other modernists had given us some color coding right You know who could have used a decoder ring is James Joyce What the fuck was he ever banging on about Lessing casually responds to him at times She parodies a few different styles for a while pastiche like Joyce like at one point dog walking Henry Miller so hard I’m surprised she doesn’t clicker train him It’s not just funny it’s silly Why doesn’t anyone mention that Doris Lessing is horny and funnyBut there’s that that earthiness too that concern with the reality of the body James Joyce named defecation Margaret Drabble says and Lessing names menstruation There are pages and pages about menstruation Doris Lessing is Judy Blume’s fairy godmother This is of course controversial because men are still in charge of some things and we absolutely cannot handle menstruation in any way and The Golden Notebook was plenty controversial when it came out in 1963 As if periods aren’t gross enough Lessing would like to talk about female orgasms enthusiastically and at length She has ideas about them vaginal vs clitoral orgasms and it’s all a bit Freudian and I don’t mean to tell anyone how to cum but I have the impression that some of these ideas are almost as outdated as her ideas about gay people which are frankly offensiveBut look I’m trying to position Doris Lessing as horny and funny like she’s some sort of modernist Sarah Silverman and I don’t mean to say that’s all she is Lessing has a lot of ideas She used to get irritated when people were obsessed with The Golden Notebook’s structure Pay attention to the themes she would say It’s about communism Stalin has proven to be a nightmare and worldwide communists are descending into a morass of cliches and meetings One can’t seriously talk about Stalin without betraying the party nor can one seriously not talk about Stalin without betraying the ideal and so communism is trapped and dying The dream of communism has met the reality of Stalin and it can’t survive This was all maybe a bit overdone for the non communists of the time who’d realized what a monster Stalin was years agoIt’s about men and women and there’s this whole segment of discussion of the book as castrating The men are often worthless affair starved predatory terrible in bed I can only speak for myself but I didn’t read it as misandrous What Anna is so frank about is that she wants men very badly and can’t find any Real men become fewer and fewer and we are frightened trying to create men Which I gather is still a problem But she likes them She likes men Lessing’s characters like being friends with them and having sex with them He knew nothing about her says Ella of a man she’s just met liking him he did not know for instance that her nipples were stinging And here we are horny and funny again It’s about how people live with each other and in the end that’s still my favorite thing about Lessing that navigation of the mined field She notices so much and she describes it so clearly Whenever I meet an American man she says I wait for the moment when his face really lights up—it’s when he’s talking about the group of buddies Or there’s this little passage where she describes a horny teenage girl who’s totally incidental to the plot in that state so many young girls go through—a state of sexual obsession that can be like a sort of trance She is plain The men don’t even notice that she’s in heat All the women do and uietly endeavor to protect her Has anyone ever told that girl’s story before Lessing just throws it out there casually and moves on She’s so perceptive and she’s so good at communicating what she sees and all this while being so very horny and so very funny It’s awe inspiring and it’s compelling and you can’t help liking her

Doris Lessing ó 1 DOWNLOAD

The Golden NotebookEdition Alternating between a conventional novel involving Anna and her friend Molly and Anna's. Given up because although it was well written and the characters developed well early on I just have no interest at all in the upper middle class who have angst and money instead of housework and jobs They pontificated about sex and politics and other people's affairs when the rest of the country were out working and thinking of who was cooking dinner that night and whether or not tuppence on the tax each week was going to make school trips a bit difficult Just not what I want to read about right nowTwo stars because generally I really like Lessing and I love her writing