A woman whose smile is open and whose expression is glad has a kind of beauty no matter what she wears.
Grief is in two parts. The first is loss. The second is the remaking of life.
We also have to make sure our children know the history of women. Tell them the rotten truth: It wasn’t always possible for women to become doctors or managers or insurance people. Let them be armed with a true picture of the way we want it to be.
You can be creative and not addictive, or addictive and not creative. Most addicted people do not produce anything of remarkable note.
Everybody is bound by some social rules. But I think that artists need some kind of freedom to explore their minds and that some of them tend to take that freedom to live a little more openly or a little more dangerously, sometimes a lot more self-destructively, than other people.
When I grew up, you needed to have straight hair. It’s symbolic of needing to be like everyone else, needing to look like everyone else. And what that meant was looking like the dominant ruling class in America.
I think that certainly the artists of the ’40s, ’50s and ’60s were fighting a very conformist society, which didn’t give them enough space to live or create, and they were bucking all kinds of spoken and unspoken rules.
I believe that it is our human right to be parents and women. And there’s no contradiction between feminism, which means women should have all that they are entitled to, all that they can do, all the opportunities that they can take advantage of they should have.
I think it is a good thing to have woman friends at every stage of life. We confide in each other, we support each other, we understand each other most of the time. Of course, sometimes we are competitive or angry or distant, too. But I do think it is important not to let the main friendships slip away in the sweep of the days.
I am not a perfect friend, and it is impossible not to rebuff or be rebuffed if you move about the world.
I really consider myself a writer, and a writer who is sometimes a social critic. I’m not an ideologue, I don’t join a party. I follow along and take notes. Sometimes I throw in my two cents.
Decay is quiet but ghastly, explosion is dramatic and dreadful. There’s not much to choose between the two of them in reality, and most of our lives have sufficient of both.
I have always been fascinated by the human mind, conscious and unconscious – that is what writing and reading is about, too. The why of your life and the why of your choices and the what has happened that you know and the what that you don’t know is really riveting, and psychoanalysts share my wonder at how it all unfolds.
If I were planning to be stranded on a desert island, I wouldn’t take Freud’s books with me, because I’ve already read them all.
You have to be a lover of books without expecting more of them than they give – a little pleasure, a little insight, a moment of escape, a deepening of your own humanity. Not much else.
Self-pity is never useful. It tends to distort like a fun-house mirror.
Romanticizing the act of writing or any other art is not very helpful to the artist or the art. It’s much better if one simply does.