so the other day my girlfriend and i were at a thrift store looking at the books, and we found a copy of the princess by tennyson from around 1900 for like 2 dollars
here is the inscription on the front
so “unknown yet known” is a misquote of a bible verse (2 corinthians 6:9) which goes like “known yet regarded as unknown” and that whole bit is about like, keeping love in your heart despite hardship, which. ok. (also i’m not saying but i’m just saying do you like know her KNOW her in the biblical sense or does helen WANT TO but they haven’t yet??? ok i’m totally saying that’s what it means.)
now i don’t want to just yell GAY out of nowhere, but like, your unknown yet known friend? ladies? giving each other books with ambiguously gay dedications about love in the face of trials and suffering in the front?
so what’s this princess thing even about? wikipedia says:
The poem tells the story of an heroic princess who forswears the world of men and founds a women’s university where men are forbidden to enter.
okay, so let’s look at what passages in this book are underlined. (and we can’t tell who did the underlining, helen or emma. the inscription on the front is in pen, but the underlinings are in pencil, so who the fuck knows)
Two heads in council, two beside the hearth,
Two in the tangled business of the world,
Two in the liberal offices of life,
Two plummets dropt for one to sound the abyss
O hard, when love and duty clash!
'Alone,' I said, 'from earlier than I know,
Immersed in rich foreshadowings of the world,
I loved the woman: he, that doth not, lives
A drowning life, besotted in sweet self,
Or pines in sad experience worse than death,
Or keeps his winged affections clipt with crime:
Yet was there one through whom I loved her, one
Not learnèd, save in gracious household ways,
Not perfect, nay, but full of tender wants,
No Angel, but a dearer being, all dipt In
Angel instincts, breathing Paradise,
Interpreter between the Gods and men,
Who looked all native to her place, and yet
On tiptoe seemed to touch upon a sphere
Too gross to tread, and all male minds perforce
Swayed to her from their orbits as they moved,
And girdled her with music. Happy he
With such a mother! faith in womankind
Beats with his blood, and trust in all things high
Comes easy to him, and though he trip and fall
He shall not blind his soul with clay.’
Indeed I love: the new day comes, the light
Dearer for night, as dearer thou for faults
Lived over: lift thine eyes; my doubts are dead.
wow so in conclusion kate and i found a gay ladies book from the past and i’m really overwhelmed with emotions about it????
"Yes," said Eustace, "and whenever you’ve tried to get her to come and talk about Narnia or do anything about Narnia, she says ‘What wonderful memories you have! Fancy you still thinking about all those funny games we used to play when we were children.’ "
"Oh Susan!" said Jill. "She’s interested in nothing nowadays except nylons and lipstick and invitations. She always was a jolly sight too keen on being grow-up."
"Grown-up, indeed," said the Lady Polly. "I wish she would grow up. She wasted all her school time wanting to be the age she is now, and she’ll waste all the rest of her life trying to stay that age. Her whole idea is to race on to the silliest time of one’s life as quick as she can and then stop there as long as she can."
"Well, let’s not talk about that now," said Peter.
#there is a special kind of rage that fills a girl’s heart the first time she learns about what happened to susan #and that rage stays with a girl #she carries it around #she remembers when she puts on her make up ‘aslan kicked susan out of heaven for this’ #and she looks into her reflect and whispers #’better to reign in hell than serve in heaven motherfucker’ #the only lesson c.s. lewis had to teach us was that men are intimately #threatened by women who own their own sexuality
What Should We Call Girl Pain?
The starlets who posed for the July 2003 Vanity Fair “It’s Totally Raining Teens!” cover symbolized femininity, success, beauty, talent, youth and perfection. Average girls in the aughts didn’t have the accoutrements to be them, but they could watch them. Even better than watching them, average girls could read their books. The books based on their shows and movies heightened the fantasy. Average girls could be any of these starlets for $3.99 or $4.99. Average girls could be like them while they waited to grow up, not knowing they are already like them.
Five out of nine of the starlets featured on the July 2003 Vanity Fair cover have admitted to struggling with mental illness, making them more than Mary Sues. For Mary-Kate, her pain was called anorexia. For Mandy Moore and Evan Rachel Wood, depression. For Lindsay Lohan, addiction. For Amanda Bynes, “an eating disorder.”
Lindsay Lohan and Amanda Bynes, in particular, labored in Hollywood, as young, vulnerable girls, at the cost of self-love and self-awareness. Money and success couldn’t save them, ultimately, from the reality of illness and suffering. They both represent hurt and injury, and are mocked for it. When people are not cheaply waxing political about them, they are fetishized by gay white men and straight white men alike, mocked in the new lowest form of white male humor: White Girl Jokes.
Men never ask what they should call women’s pain, so they call us crazy. They call us crazy and they laugh at us. The same men who say women aren’t funny obviously do find women funny. They find women funny at the most inappropriate time: when we’re hurting. There is no sympathy, no empathy, for young women under the influence, on the verge of, or currently breaking down. Girl pain is titillating and amusing disaster porn. In Lindsay Lohan and Amanda Bynes’ case, their celebrity eclipses their humanity; they become the “willing victims” of the public abuse of men. Their inner turmoil, a spectacle, is a living punchline reaction gif, making us ask, “Where are their people?”
Lindsay and Amanda, we know, have no people. Amanda Bynes, in a recent tweet, stated, “I don’t speak to my parents anymore.” Lindsay has always been people-less. We learned this, when Lindsay released “Confessions of a Broken Heart (Daughter To Father).” Amy Poehler and Tina Fey tried to be Lindsay’s people, when they staged an intervention in 2005. Their efforts failed.
We watched Britney Spears struggle in the spotlight from 2006-2008, until her parents intervened, like good people should, rescuing their daughter from her very public nightmare, a nightmare exacerbated by men like Sam Lutfi and Perez Hilton. We watched Demi Lovato, during her tour with the Jonas Brothers, punch a back-up dancer. Like Britney, Demi’s support system— her people— intervened. Demi began her treatment at Timberline Knolls. It was there, at Timberline Knolls, that Demi learned what to call her hurt and injury and girl pain: bipolar disorder, bulimia, self-medication, cutting, etc. Her girl pain inspired her last album, Unbroken, the most Lohan-esque song from the album being “For the Love a Daughter.” Britney is older than the girls on the July 2003 Vanity Fair cover, Demi is younger, but their girl pain is the same.
The girls on the Vanity Fair cover all seem to express a vulnerability and winking stoicism. They seem aware of the fact that they were corseted and boxed in— as the clothes, the color and the cover suggest— but not weak. Amanda and Lindsay, both on the sides, are not holding onto any of the other girls. Instead, they grasp the white structure.
What should we call girl pain?
Ileana D’cruz for L’Officiel India
Turns out a sphere of floating water makes the ultimate fisheye lens!
Vine by astronaut Reid Wiseman
Vines… in… spaaaaaaace!
He’s got a fish-eye lens…he should make a rap video with a couple of friends. In Space! Waughmp Waughmp.
I am absolutely amased by these Dolce & Gobanna shoes. They are amazing!
i asked stephen sandyfarquhar his thoughts on queer vs mogai and i think they shed some fantasic new insight on the issue (bold is mine):
haha actually i almost sent you a message about queer vs. mogai. i always misread mogai as mogwai, which is a scottish post-rock band.
i have to admit that all this preciousness about “oh no but that word is a slur” irritates the hell out of me. my instinctual response to that message was “oh, you didn’t consent to be called queer? well i certainly did not consent to be called mogai.” i think defining ourselves by our marginalization rather than by our difference is awful and unimaginative and masochistic and ultimately based in respectability politics. under the paradigm suggested by mogai, once homophobia is over, gay people will be over too.
i feel like the resistance to “queer” has to do with ignorance about how the word became what it is today— the aftermath of the initial horror of AIDS and the formation of a group called queer nation out of the ashes of ACT UP, idk if i’m telling you what you already know, but like, it wasn’t like we all just started saying “queer” one day—it came out of a cultural and historical moment where “gayness” as we knew it seemed to have been murdered by the us gov’t negligence w/r/t HIV/AIDS, and it seemed possible that something new might emerge. or rather, it seemed probable that we would have to change because practices one might associate with “gay” rather than the “queer”ness of the 90s and00s—closetedness, anonymous unprotected sex, bathhouses, all this kind of thing—were made less workable by the epidemic. and the political foment, the explosion of activism, that accompanied the epidemic made it clear that there were some gay people who wanted to fulfill the promises of 70s gay lib—smash the state! change the world!—and some who wanted to assimilate. so becoming “queer” seemed like a good solution.
tbh i knew about the origins of ‘queer’ but i didn’t think to assume that critics of the term would not know/would not factor that into their thinking. i guess that means like yes, the people who formed the idea of queer (as a blurred, unbounded, unbinarized term) did reclaim a slur to form it but the term we use how we use it today is not important because it is reclaimed- it is important because of the meaning they gave it. MOGAI is a blanket term for a lot of identities, yes, but it doesn’t do the work that queer does of uniting us by rejecting the binaries that would divide us; MOGAI is not a PC/neutral/non-offense version of queer, but an entirely different word with an entirely different use and meaning.
and it’s true- defining ourself by our marginalization and oppression is fundamentally limited. to conceive of a “we” that is defined by a hatred and fear from “them”… is that better than a “we” that is celebratory and uniting in nature, but is sourced from a slur? at least we say, that was a slur but now it is ours and it is beautiful. MOGAI doesn’t do that- it can only describe oppression and is useless to enjoy the meaty, sparkling, vicseral brilliance of a queer life.
to think of “queer” only as a slur or a reclaimed slur and not as a word formed from the clay of oppression into a queer life-art by incredible, inspiring activists also erases queer history… stephen’s right, i think people who distrust the word “queer” might often not be thinking of this (even if they do know it)
tbh it’s been a while since i read naything on the 80s and i should pick up a book or two again…
i want to add: to say that the word queer has a noble history of reclamation and everything is not to say that that work of building and reclaiming queer is over yet. the queer project is not as yet a successful one—rather, “queerness is not yet here,” all that muñoz type stuff.