A Year of Feminist Classics

Because they're better together :)

Discussion: So Long a Letter

I know, I have yet to wrap-up the Wollstonecraft discussion but figured I would get this one started first – more open discussion is always a good thing right?!

As I mentioned in the introduction, it is a rather small volume but it really discusses a lot. I want to bring up first two items that were raised in the comments on Tuesday.

1. What did you think of the different responses each women had to polygamy? Did you think that one was portrayed as better than the other? Did you feel both were accurate portrayals?

2. What did you think of the way the funeral happens? From my limited knowledge I believe that the portrayal was fairly true to an Islamic funeral. Is this true? What did you think of the time it gave her to consider her options? Do you think the time of reflection is a good or bad thing? What about the way that both wives had to work together?

Another thing that was brought up was the way the climate of the country at the time of writing affected both Wollstonecraft and Bâ. Wollstonecraft wrote in response to the French revolution. I don’t know a lot about Senegal (note to self – learn more!) but I would imagine that Bâ wrote in large part because of the let down post-independence  for the rights of women. What do you think of this – do you think the political situation played a part in her work? Did you see any other symmetry between the two works?

Dragonflyy419 has already posted the beginnings of her discussion here, do check it out. Have you posted about this book? Please include your link in the comments below and I will link to it in the next discussion post or wrap-up!

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13 responses to “Discussion: So Long a Letter

  1. Pingback: So Long a Letter / Mariama Bâ – Rat's Reading

  2. Emily January 22, 2011 at 3:27 am

    I just posted on this novella (here), and talk quite a bit about the role of politics and Bâ’s depiction of heady idealistic youth followed by the compromises & disappointments of a post-revolutionary reality. For me this was one of those books that’s “just okay” while reading it, but once I started writing about it there was so much to say!

  3. Beachreader January 22, 2011 at 8:48 pm

    i just finished the book and have posted my thoughts on my blog. This was an interesting look at current cultural and religious practices that are working to subjcate women. Great choice for the challenge.

  4. Shelley January 25, 2011 at 5:01 pm

    I just read The War On Words about how what could not be said about slavery infected American writers both before and after the Civil War.

    It’s also interesting to think about what could not be said about women.

  5. nymeth January 27, 2011 at 10:00 am

    My thoughts, which mostly focus on question one. Thank you for picking this book, Amy! I really enjoyed it, and who knows when I’d have picked it up otherwise.

  6. thegirlwiththehair January 27, 2011 at 11:44 am

    My rambling post looks at the book as a whole, I will probably do up another post soon focusing on the discussion questions. I really loved this book! 🙂 Great choice!

  7. dangermom January 29, 2011 at 8:01 pm

    I finished the book days ago and then took forever to get my thoughts out! Such as they are–I have a lot more to say but can’t seem to get it written yet. Anyway, thanks so much for putting this book on the list; I am so glad to have been given the opportunity to read it. And here are my thoughts.

  8. Pingback: A Year of Feminist Classics Month 1 Wrap-Up « Amy Reads

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