Wednesday, June 2

What I'm reading now..

Despite the brand-new and very beautiful Kindle (still excited--!!!)...I just finished the paper version of Blindness and am in the midst of reading The New Jewish Wedding (NJW).

I picked up Blindness @ a stoop sale a few weekends ago for $.50 and received the NJW as a present from a friend.

Although I usually read really quickly, I found myself moving through Blindness pretty slowly. Sarramago doesn't use any quotation marks to differentiate between dialogue and description, and I found myself re-reading big chunks of the book to make sure I didn't miss anything.

Despite the slow going, I thought it was incredibly fascinating.
And upsetting.
But I guess fascinating + upsetting = well deserved nobel prize for literature.

I also watched the movie on Netflix over the weekend and found it underwhelming.

It just does not compare to the book in any way shape or form! I did find it interesting, however, that many blind and visually impaired advocacy groups tried to organize boycotts of the film. Apparently there was a lot of controversy because the people in the novel really regress in terms of behavior, compassion, decency etc. after they become blind. While I appreciate that people who are blind are often discriminated against at work etc., I do not think that the novel actually promotes the idea that visually impaired/blind people are either less capable or somehow more prone to immorality/violence etc. Rather, I thought that the book was trying to convey that all people are ill-equipped to respond to catastrophe and that there is something (possibly intrinsic?) to human nature that allows for domination and violence when the opportunity arises. I think the blindness in the book/film have very little to do with actually being blind--especially in the context of real life.

As for the NJW, I'm finding out all sorts of interesting things about the way Jews get married, and what bits of the ceremony and celebration are traditional vs. borrowed from non-Jewish culture vs. tradition only and not necessary.

Still a long way off from integrating any of this new knowledge into planning, but glad to be learning more about marriage from a Jewish perspective.