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Women in Dark Times

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Jacqueline Rose's heroines could not appear more different from each other: revolutionary socialist Rosa Luxemburg; German-Jewish painter Charlotte Salomon, persecuted by family tragedy and Nazism; film icon and consummate performer Marilyn Monroe.Yet historically these women have a shared story to tell, as they blaze a trail across some of the most dramatic events of the Jacqueline Rose's heroines could not appear more different from each other: revolutionary socialist Rosa Luxemburg; German-Jewish painter Charlotte Salomon, persecuted by family tragedy and Nazism; film icon and consummate performer Marilyn Monroe.Yet historically these women have a shared story to tell, as they blaze a trail across some of the most dramatic events of the last century - revolution, totalitarianism, the American dream. Enraged by injustice, they are each in touch with what is most painful about being human, bound together by their willingness to bring the unspeakable to light.


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Jacqueline Rose's heroines could not appear more different from each other: revolutionary socialist Rosa Luxemburg; German-Jewish painter Charlotte Salomon, persecuted by family tragedy and Nazism; film icon and consummate performer Marilyn Monroe.Yet historically these women have a shared story to tell, as they blaze a trail across some of the most dramatic events of the Jacqueline Rose's heroines could not appear more different from each other: revolutionary socialist Rosa Luxemburg; German-Jewish painter Charlotte Salomon, persecuted by family tragedy and Nazism; film icon and consummate performer Marilyn Monroe.Yet historically these women have a shared story to tell, as they blaze a trail across some of the most dramatic events of the last century - revolution, totalitarianism, the American dream. Enraged by injustice, they are each in touch with what is most painful about being human, bound together by their willingness to bring the unspeakable to light.

30 review for Women in Dark Times

  1. 5 out of 5

    James Tierney

    http://www.killyourdarlingsjournal.co... http://www.killyourdarlingsjournal.co...

  2. 5 out of 5

    Alyce Hunt

    This book was... okay. It wasn't bad, but it wasn't brilliant. There's a large focus on women and the second world war, so you need to have a basic understanding of political terms (fascism, Marxism, nationalism, capitalism, communism etc.) or it will go right over your head, as none of the terms are expanded upon but they're all touched upon quite frequently. I was interested in reading about the struggles of women throughout all of history, so this was a bit more niche than I'd expected. I don' This book was... okay. It wasn't bad, but it wasn't brilliant. There's a large focus on women and the second world war, so you need to have a basic understanding of political terms (fascism, Marxism, nationalism, capitalism, communism etc.) or it will go right over your head, as none of the terms are expanded upon but they're all touched upon quite frequently. I was interested in reading about the struggles of women throughout all of history, so this was a bit more niche than I'd expected. I don't really like Jacqueline Rose's writing style, as her sentences are just too long - it sounds pedantic, but when every sentence has three or four clauses in it... It's all a bit too much jibber jabber for me. Nice idea, not so good in the execution.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Sam

    Goodness this book was hard work, and not because of the subject matter either. Rose's style is dry and academic but there are moments where her passion does manage to break through and this grabs you and keeps you going. I found myself skim reading large sections where she delves into the analysis of the artwork of the women covered (including the analysis on Monroe's movies) to get to the sections about the women themselves. In doing so I found this became far more readable and user friendly b Goodness this book was hard work, and not because of the subject matter either. Rose's style is dry and academic but there are moments where her passion does manage to break through and this grabs you and keeps you going. I found myself skim reading large sections where she delves into the analysis of the artwork of the women covered (including the analysis on Monroe's movies) to get to the sections about the women themselves. In doing so I found this became far more readable and user friendly but I know it means I have undoubtedly missed a lot of interesting and potentially important points. Sadly Rose was unable to open artwork analysis to a heathen like me (I knew there was a reason I liked science!). Having said that, Rose does show that there are many women who fought various battles over the last century to make gains in the Women's Rights movement that we haven't heard about or necessarily associated with feminism. And this is nothing but a good thing. I just wish she could analyze less and emote more. Those moments where she let her emotions and passions through saved this book for me.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Wendy

    Complex, nuanced, intellectually rigorous, WOMEN IN DARK TIMES, challenged me to think. Jacqueline Rose explores the stories of women, each remarkable, who have faced oppression, brutality, disdain, idealization, inequity in all its forms, and carved a path to express their creativity and humanity whilst walking in that space between private and public pain. " Just imagine, it is precisely those bruises on my soul that at the next moment gave me the courage for a new life. " -Rosa Luxemburg The wom Complex, nuanced, intellectually rigorous, WOMEN IN DARK TIMES, challenged me to think. Jacqueline Rose explores the stories of women, each remarkable, who have faced oppression, brutality, disdain, idealization, inequity in all its forms, and carved a path to express their creativity and humanity whilst walking in that space between private and public pain. " Just imagine, it is precisely those bruises on my soul that at the next moment gave me the courage for a new life. " -Rosa Luxemburg The women she writes about, artists, revolutionaries, survivors do not try to block out the dark but bring the dark to our full attention, allowing us to look at what they have faced. Rose's analysis celebrates the nuance, contradiction, ambiguity and all those complex and murky phases that each woman's life traverses as she faces brutality and violence to her body and soul. Rose and the women she presents to us reject a monolithic "truth". This is refreshing but also makes reading this work more difficult for those who might want the illusion of certainties than the reality of uncertainty. Translating these ideas into our own lives, placing the pattern of spontaneity and uncertainty on the events of our lives, brings a lucid brightness to the courage each of us exhibits every day in the face of the discrimination we live with. Brilliant book.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Oliveb

    While this book was tough to get through, reading it as though I was studying it - taking notes, underlining etc. made it a lot easier to digest. I found reading about artworks I had never seen was a really interesting experience because I could imagine the artworks completely for myself. The title is a little bit misleading as it suggested at first that Rose was saying women are in dark times but in reality the book gives various accounts of what women do in dark times personally, politically While this book was tough to get through, reading it as though I was studying it - taking notes, underlining etc. made it a lot easier to digest. I found reading about artworks I had never seen was a really interesting experience because I could imagine the artworks completely for myself. The title is a little bit misleading as it suggested at first that Rose was saying women are in dark times but in reality the book gives various accounts of what women do in dark times personally, politically and globally. I don't think I would actually recommend this book to anyone, but anyone who commits to getting through the somewhat dry, intellectual parts will be rewarded.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Iza October

    This book is many things — history, biography, cultural critique — but moreover it is Jacqueline Rose’s call for women to take action, as“[w]e as women have been reasonable for far too long.” She begins with the story of three women: Rosa Luxemburg, a controversial socialist; Charlotte Salomon, a German-Jewish painter; and Marilyn Monroe, the film icon. Rose then argues that each was a feminist vanguard of her respective generation. From their example, Rose begins to explore the roles women take This book is many things — history, biography, cultural critique — but moreover it is Jacqueline Rose’s call for women to take action, as“[w]e as women have been reasonable for far too long.” She begins with the story of three women: Rosa Luxemburg, a controversial socialist; Charlotte Salomon, a German-Jewish painter; and Marilyn Monroe, the film icon. Rose then argues that each was a feminist vanguard of her respective generation. From their example, Rose begins to explore the roles women take in modern societies, particularly as it pertains to art and creation. Her plea for a meaningful feminist movement is an intellectually invigorating and encouraging read.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Tracy

    Having heard the author interviewed I was interested in reading her book. It has given me food for thought and for ongoing discussion, which I appreciated. Much of the talk around feminism seems to set its parameters by using the known paradigms, usually from the historical patriarchal influences, whereas in this book I read of a more inclusive human approach to the way we as a collective could start thinking. The examples of the women who have stood on this ground, struggled with the ideas, suf Having heard the author interviewed I was interested in reading her book. It has given me food for thought and for ongoing discussion, which I appreciated. Much of the talk around feminism seems to set its parameters by using the known paradigms, usually from the historical patriarchal influences, whereas in this book I read of a more inclusive human approach to the way we as a collective could start thinking. The examples of the women who have stood on this ground, struggled with the ideas, suffered for standing up for new possibilities makes it a valuable read.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Anne Fenn

    To be truthful, I only read half of this book. I enjoyed the sections on Rosa Luxemburg, Charlotte Salomon and Marilyn Monroe. They were really interesting in showing what each woman struggled to achieve. Mighty achievements too. The mix of history and feminist analysis was very successful. After that, things just got too grim - I skimmed the long honour killings section, fearful of what it contained . It's valuable and original, we really should all be reading this book. To be truthful, I only read half of this book. I enjoyed the sections on Rosa Luxemburg, Charlotte Salomon and Marilyn Monroe. They were really interesting in showing what each woman struggled to achieve. Mighty achievements too. The mix of history and feminist analysis was very successful. After that, things just got too grim - I skimmed the long honour killings section, fearful of what it contained . It's valuable and original, we really should all be reading this book.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Bridie Tulloch

    Second attempt at reading this as I skimmed through it first time around. Dissecting it bit by bit this time as it’s quite academic in comparison to my usual reads.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Brittany

    I only finished this book because I have problems not finishing a book, but there were many times I wanted to stop. Rose's book is a feminist book focusing on 7 women who struggled thru dark times starting in the early 1900s to create better futures for men and women. 6 of the women I had not heard of, but had or have led both amazing and sometimes horrible lives (like dying pregnant in a concentration camp, being killed by your parents in an "honor" killing). My problem with the book includes t I only finished this book because I have problems not finishing a book, but there were many times I wanted to stop. Rose's book is a feminist book focusing on 7 women who struggled thru dark times starting in the early 1900s to create better futures for men and women. 6 of the women I had not heard of, but had or have led both amazing and sometimes horrible lives (like dying pregnant in a concentration camp, being killed by your parents in an "honor" killing). My problem with the book includes the way it was organized. I liked that it was chronological, but then having a theme of these 6 artists and one chapter on honor killing thrown in was weird. Ending with three modern artists that I didn't understand why they were thrown in was odd too. It was also difficult to read with various historical, literary, and art references that went over my head. The chapter on Marilyn Monroe and Charlotte Salomon were my favs. There is a lot in this book and it might be better to pick and choose what to read.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Liza

    I requested this book from the library because Jessa Crispin recommended it in a tarot/astro reading (she also recommended Bostonians which was uncannily on point!). There is something I like about when someone clearly feels something really passionately in a way that is not entirely legible to me, which is what I would say was going on in this book. Still I have to admit I didn't finish it before it poofed away from my ereader. Maybe someday will try again. I requested this book from the library because Jessa Crispin recommended it in a tarot/astro reading (she also recommended Bostonians which was uncannily on point!). There is something I like about when someone clearly feels something really passionately in a way that is not entirely legible to me, which is what I would say was going on in this book. Still I have to admit I didn't finish it before it poofed away from my ereader. Maybe someday will try again.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Ann Tonks

    It's quite simple. I'm simply not well educated enough or intellectual enough to understand this book. I was looking to forward to reading about Ros Luxemburg, Charlotte Salomon and Marilyn Monroe but I just couldn't drag myself through the dense analysis. It's quite simple. I'm simply not well educated enough or intellectual enough to understand this book. I was looking to forward to reading about Ros Luxemburg, Charlotte Salomon and Marilyn Monroe but I just couldn't drag myself through the dense analysis.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Natalie

    Not quite what I expected it to be, was hard work at times, but a worthwhile project.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Nina ( picturetalk321 )

  15. 4 out of 5

    Elizabeth D

  16. 5 out of 5

    Glenn

  17. 4 out of 5

    Patricia Reis

  18. 4 out of 5

    Katherine Tallent

  19. 5 out of 5

    A

  20. 5 out of 5

    Diana Gittins

  21. 5 out of 5

    Mary Cronk

  22. 5 out of 5

    Eric Wilson

  23. 5 out of 5

    Jenny Oo

  24. 5 out of 5

    Rebecca McClane

  25. 4 out of 5

    Leslie

  26. 4 out of 5

    Nicole

  27. 4 out of 5

    Rivse

  28. 4 out of 5

    Teresa

  29. 4 out of 5

    Caroline Gerardo

  30. 4 out of 5

    Joanna

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