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A novel in desperate need of further exploration and consideration both by myself and others Written by Diana Frederics a pseudonym, but that s a whole separate, utterly fascinating story in and of itself and published in 1939 by the Citadel Press, just a glance through the chapter names listed in the table of contents announces its disarmingly forthright approach towards its so called strange content Am I A Lesbian , I Am A Lesbian , Leslie and I Become Lovers, etc Throughout A novel in desperate need of further exploration and consideration both by myself and others Written by Diana Frederics a pseudonym, but that s a whole separate, utterly fascinating story in and of itself and published in 1939 by the Citadel Press, just a glance through the chapter names listed in the table of contents announces its disarmingly forthright approach towards its so called strange content Am I A Lesbian , I Am A Lesbian , Leslie and I Become Lovers, etc Throughout The Well of Loneliness Radclyffe Hall embroiders her representation of lesbian desires and lives with and ultimately deadening metaphors and other explicit literary devices Diana resolutely opts for the opposite tack Consider With this acknowledgment of my homosexuality I discovered myself now I had something to go on It was like being born all over again, and the relief I felt astonished me I had, so to speak, nothing left to be worried about My fears were all confirmed I was determined to respect myself for what I was, lesbianism be damned Well yes, not exactly a final pronouncement that jibes easily within our contemporary rhetoric of relentless pro queer self affirmation, but I will attest that after reading so many books from this period and let s be frank, from all eras where this same realization is accompanied by utter despair followed by a quick, inevitably sad downward spiral, the clear eyed, no nonsense attitude displayed by Diana s eponymous subject had nothing less than a lightening effect on me With a rather spare, declarative style, it doesn t take that long for Diana to pragmatically grasp evaluate the facts of her life and then set forth to make the best of things And while there are inevitable complications along the way, she does manage to do pretty darn well for herself, and the fact that the concluding chapter of the novel is titled Fulfillment says quite lot If this perspective came as a bit of a happy shock for me in 2014, I can only imagine its effect on a similarly sympathetic reader in 1939 The few scholarly considerations I ve been able to find regarding Diana, most particularly Julie Abraham s introduction to a 1995 reprinting by the NYU Press, take a surprisingly critical stance toward the novel, tending to focus on what the novel is not as opposed to the many things it is But for my part, Diana was surely one of the great revelations of my reading year Originally written for a post about Reading Queerly in 2014 over at my blog, Queer Modernisms Like most people who ve ever heard of this book, I first learned of it on the PBS TV show, The History Detectives, where an original edition of it was featured on an episode I m a big HD fan in the course of trying to discover the true author of Diana, Tufuku exasperatedly explains to viewers that gays and lesbians experienced uncalled for amounts of discrimination in mid 20th century America Discrimination I was curious about this 1939 book that somehow avoid Like most people who ve ever heard of this book, I first learned of it on the PBS TV show, The History Detectives, where an original edition of it was featured on an episode I m a big HD fan this was an excellent episode in the course of trying to discover the true author of Diana, Tufuku exasperatedly explains to viewers that gays and lesbians experienced uncalled for amounts of discrimination in mid 20th century America Discrimination I was curious about this 1939 book that somehow avoided offing its lesbian lead character in tragic murder or suicide, as many books in this genre would do for decades to come Possibly thanks to the HD exposure, a new edition of Diana was released recently When a good friend and fellow HD fan gave me a copy for Christmas, I was excited, but also a little hesitant just because a book is historically interesting doesn t mean it is well written But as a novel, it turned out not to be half bad And it is worlds ahead of its time in showing a self aware lesbian hero in a positive light I probably could have just read the chapter titles of this book and called it a day For example Chapter I Meet LeslieNext chapter Leslie and I Become LoversI wanted to read this because I heard it had a happy ending, though written in 1939 And yeah Diana and her final girlfriend don t die, but it s hard to root for them Diana is fine, but all her lovers are a terrible bunch I might give this a 2.5, since in the context of gay history there were moments of interest, but a lot of the time I probably could have just read the chapter titles of this book and called it a day For example Chapter I Meet LeslieNext chapter Leslie and I Become LoversI wanted to read this because I heard it had a happy ending, though written in 1939 And yeah Diana and her final girlfriend don t die, but it s hard to root for them Diana is fine, but all her lovers are a terrible bunch I might give this a 2.5, since in the context of gay history there were moments of interest, but a lot of the time I was fighting boredom Complicado de calificar La verdad es que no est muy bien escrito y es muy melodram tico un novel n entretenido PERO, cuando se revisa el contexto en que est escrito poca y tem tica sube mucho puntos s lo por haber sido escrito y publicado y, tambi n, por ser un sincero reflejo del horror de ser gay en aquella poca. Published in 1939, Diana A Strange Autobiography is both amazingly outdated and amazingly refreshing in its portrayal of one lesbian s life Full of passages that both calmed and frightened me, the book never once released its hold The stuff that either saddened or shocked, thankfully, no longer is believed by most sensible people today i.e insulting and downright false stereotypes about gay women What surprised me the most, though, was how much still applies today the need, for instance, Published in 1939, Diana A Strange Autobiography is both amazingly outdated and amazingly refreshing in its portrayal of one lesbian s life Full of passages that both calmed and frightened me, the book never once released its hold The stuff that either saddened or shocked, thankfully, no longer is believed by most sensible people today i.e insulting and downright false stereotypes about gay women What surprised me the most, though, was how much still applies today the need, for instance, to hide who you really are from your own family There are both reflections and actual incidents from the book that speak to the reader s heart Our narrator realizes she has feelings for a fellow student and begins rearranging her schedule so she doesn t bump into her She does everything possible to avoid placing herself in situations where she could make Ruth the girl she likes feel uncomfortable or make herself fall even harder How many of us really, our sexuality doesn t matter here immediately try and squelch our true feelings when we like someone we know we shouldn t Lots, of course, but when you read of Diana s experiences you feel as if no one has ever captured how you feel quite like she does.Diana believes the most antiquated things about homosexuality, which isn t surprising considering the author was writing this in the 1930s For every nutty idea women are gay because they re brought up around boys growing up or lesbians just cannot stay in a committed relationship there is a counter idea that is simply lovely and yet sensible at the same time If love ever came to me, I would accept it If it did not, my life would not be frustrated Love, I would remember, was only one of many things, and sometimes, a very small oneI was sick of thoughts made of hope As it turns out, Diana ends up discovering a lot of what she believed about lesbians and love to be wrong She struggles with loneliness and a broken heart for a long time before she finds the closest thing to a happy endinga particularly unique thing for way back then It s really amazing how far society can advance in terms of acceptance and still has so far to go and how our understanding of the human psyche has evolved This was fascinating from an historic perspective, as a time capsule on a certain time and when certain theories held sway It made me wonder how our own cultural production in 60 years will be viewed and whether those readers will see this moment as quaint, confused, and even a little bit pitiful. |Free Epub ♿ Diana: A Strange Autobiography ⚒ This is the unusual and compelling story of Diana, a tantalizingly beautiful woman who sought love in the strange by paths of Lesbos Fearless and outspoken, it dares to reveal that hidden world where perfumed caresses and half whispered endearments constitute the forbidden fruits in a Garden of Eden where men are never accepted This is how Diana A Strange Autobiography was described when it was published in paperback inThe originalhardcover edition carried with it a Publisher s Note This is the autobiography of a woman who tried to be normal In the book, Diana is presented as the unexceptional daughter of an unexceptional plutocratic family During adolescence, she finds herself drawn with mysterious intensity to a girl friend The narrative follows Diana s progress through college a trial marriage that proves she is incapable of heterosexuality intellectual and sexual education in Europe and a series of lesbian relationships culminating in a final tormented triangular struggle with two other women for the individual salvation to be found in a happy couple In her introduction, Julie Abraham argues that Diana is not really an autobiography at all, but a deliberate synthesis of different archetypes of this confessional genre, echoing, as it does, than a half dozen novels Hitting all the high and low points of the lesbian novel, the book, Abraham illustrates, offers a defense of lesbian relationships that was unprecedented inand radical for decades afterwards To be continued This was a fascinating novel Diana provided an entirely new facet to my understanding of the homosexual intellectual and emotional experience Diana was undoubtedly introspective and wise beyond her years The reader witnessed a woman who slowly came out to herself and to those whom were close to her This was no easy feat. I have the 1939 edition. if you can handle the content, it s very interesting