Wednesday, October 20, 2010
Elizabeth Gilbert, COMMITTED: A SKEPTIC MAKES PEACE WITH MARRIAGE
I actually liked this book as much as EAT, PRAY, LOVE. Very typical Gilbert writing, anecdotal, clever, playful, but it also historicizes marriage, situates it as a cultural construct within different frameworks ... it has, as she points out, changed greatly since, say, the tenth century. The initiating event is her fiance Felipe being stopped at customs and sent to jail because it has become clear that he's coming to the states, staying the allowed 90 days, leaving, and coming right back. It's not illegal ... but the officials don't like it. Gilbert talks frankly about pre-nups, being broke and being broken-hearted, the mistaken ideas she had about love when she was in her twenties, feminism, and psychological baggage. Intermixed are stories of people she met while she traveled around, asking people from all different cultures about marriage, what it means, what it provides, the sacrifices it demands (particularly of women who become mothers). Good read.