"So, you see, I write to no purpose. I write as it seems to me one has to write. For nothing. I don’t even write for women. I write about women in order to write about myself, about myself alone through the ages."
— Marguerite Duras, “House and Home” (from Practicalities)
"[Publishers Weekly: I wouldn’t want to be friends with Nora, would you? Her outlook is almost unbearably grim.]
For heaven’s sake, what kind of question is that? Would you want to be friends with Humbert Humbert? Would you want to be friends with Mickey Sabbath? Saleem Sinai? Hamlet? Krapp? Oedipus? Oscar Wao? Antigone? Raskolnikov? Any of the characters in The Corrections? Any of the characters in Infinite Jest? Any of the characters in anything Pynchon has ever written? Or Martin Amis? Or Orhan Pamuk? Or Alice Munro, for that matter? If you’re reading to find friends, you’re in deep trouble. We read to find life, in all its possibilities. The relevant question isn’t ‘is this a potential friend for me?’ but ‘is this character alive?’"
"This is what sexism does best: it makes you feel crazy for desiring parity and hopeless about ever achieving it."
— Deborah Copaken Kogan, “My So-Called ‘Post-Feminist’ Life in Arts and Letters”
"You are rather hard on ‘lady novelists’: or perhaps my corns are tender."
— Virginia Woolf to Roger Fry, 22 September 1924
"The Quick Answer goes like this:
Q: How do you write such strong/well-realized/positively portrayed women?
A: I don’t. I write characters. Some of those characters are women."
It’s not just men who should read this.
"You may not agree with a woman, but to criticize her appearance — as opposed to her ideas or actions — isn’t doing anyone any favors, least of all you. Insulting a woman’s looks when they have nothing to do with the issue at hand implies a lack of comprehension on your part, an inability to engage in high-level thinking. You may think she’s ugly, but everyone else thinks you’re an idiot."
Hillary Clinton (via ceedling)