This year – as previous year – has presented a series of nice books to book lovers. Fiction and non fiction do – these days – to a large extent deal with the intimate sphere. Love, marriage, drama, divorce, abuse, trauma, hatred, envy, disrespect and fear inside the family. Yes, these things exist and we read about it. Some dislike that bad things that happen inside closed rooms get exposed, others think it is okay. As someone who has been in long relationships before, had traumatic divorces and come over them again, I am not sure if I really benefit from reading all this. My x-husband is currently married to one of the non-fiction writers in this field, and for me, all her good advise (and yes, it is probably good advise) been a bit too much, because she is “everywhere” and thus, my x-husband is also – invisibly – everywhere. I may be oversensitive to it, but alas, I am maybe more of the type” get done with this, and go on with other things”. The focus on the intimate sphere, however, is in a sense making the world small, as if you and me are the only ones that matter. Making small dramas – and maybe happy endings with you and me building a nice nest, eating lovely meals with successful friends and buying nice new kitchens and cabins and having beach holidays at sheltered and “interesting” resorts where we befriend the locals: often a bar owner or a cleaner. While the large world goes on out there.
One nice reading of this year in Kim Leine. He takes us to a small local hospital (yes, I am familiar with small local health institutions) – this time as always on Greenland, Tasiilaq, a place I have been to. He describes one day in the life of people who WORK together (and yes, love, hate, tolerate and dislike each other too). He presents a back carpet of “war” out there, and show us how “life goes on” locally even if big drama is out there. Surprisingly few have written good dramas about work environments.
In order to be out there in the big world, and attempt to change it – you may need a VOICE. You may need to polish the narcissist in yourself, and be visible with your loud voice – to convey other messages. Politicians do. But sometimes not well enough. Some writers do. Some have ideas, but no practice. Some are out there, where things are hot. We have excellent reporters that write about the conflicts, dramas, war zones, religious and political battles, and they tell us about the big dramas. We have people who ask us to change our perspectives of life – and we have silent but hard working people who try to do something for the ones that have too little energy to be excited about small dramas, those who have to face the consequences of big dramas.
I am not brave enough to be in war zones. But I have tried to be less concerned with my small dramas, and more concerned with the big ones that are relevant to me. In the big world, women are still facing a lot of danger just because of their reproduction and sexuality. They are mobbed, ridiculed, controlled, put aside, deprived of services and even cut in their genitals because they are sexual and reproductive women. Today I am dressed in black, because Poland wants to go backwards in time, and ban women’s access to safe and legal abortions. It is not difficult to get a pregnancy started. It is way more complicated to get it ended. That is a real drama in may women’s lives.
Fellow men and women of the privileged world: enjoy the life YOU have! Make the best of it. Don’t make drama out of little things. Use a tiny little surplus energy to supply the rest of the world with happiness, fairness, equity and wisdom.
Today: wear black!