Monday, May 15, 2006

Flashback: The Bell Jar

I should have read The Bell Jar long ago instead of just a handful of years ago. In highschool my friend Julie wrote a report on Sylvia Plath and I thought The Bell Jar had something to do with canning food, like a mason jar. I never took much interest in the book until years later. I was way more interested in John's report on Edith Wharton who was a lesbian and way more intriguing than a mason jar.

The Bell Jar is a story of a young woman living in New York City during the 1950's. Esther is working as an intern at a magazine and is going into a depression. True, the book is a classic but it's modern in the way Plath writes. She doesn't use clunky vocabulary nor is she long winded. As I recall, the book moves quite fast brining the reader into a downward spiral as Esther becomes more and more depressed. Plath writes incredibly well with raw feeling, perhaps because the book is somewhat autobiographical.

The subject is heavy: depression and suicidal thoughts. I make no secret of talking about my own depression so for me it was relatable. I was turning the pages quickly to find out what was going to happen to young Esther.

After reading the book, I was looking forward to seeing the movie starring Gwyneth Paltrow. I still haven't rented it! Alas, Sylvia's life did not end on a high note as Esther's did, this much I know. Go read the book if you haven't already.


Anonymous Angie said...
DJ, I saw the movie, and I thought it was beautiful. I keep telling myself to get this book!! I don't like how she ended her life or why she did, it's very dark and sad. @ 5:39 PM  
Blogger Chic Mommy said...
I never read the book or saw the movie, but did read her biography. I attended the same college as her (Smith) and rumors of her ghost haunting her old dorm and other strange stories about her life were common knowledge amongst the women on campus. Apparently, her depression went into full swing at Smith, it was an extremely pivotal time of her life. I'll probably see the movie before I read the book, I don't have time for books these days. @ 12:45 AM  
Blogger fin said...
This is one of my fave books ever... @ 3:10 PM  
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