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Blood, Bread, and Poetry: Selected Prose, 1979-1985 by Adrienne Rich

By Adrienne Rich

Via a variety of poetic items, Adrienne wealthy explores during this assortment the intricacies of being white, woman, lesbian, Jewish, and a U.S. citizen, either at the present of her lifestyles and during the lens of her earlier.

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Additional resources for Blood, Bread, and Poetry: Selected Prose, 1979-1985

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In contemporary books and films, the murder of a woman is an end in itself. In this sad story, the murder of the woman signifies the impossibility of physical love in a way that means loss, not sadistic celebration. Tolstoy's repulsion for woman as such is not modern either. Now, this repulsion is literal and linear: directed especially against her genitals, also her breasts, also her mouth newly perceived as a sex organ. It is a goose-stepping hatred of cunt. The woman has no human dimension, no human meaning.

The whole world suffers, says the killer/husband, from the domination of men by women. The narrator points out that all rights, all privileges, all laws, are on the side of men and favor men; but the killerjhusband, using a pernicious analogy, sees that powerlessness generates revenge, and revenge is what women accomplish in the sensuality he experiences as their dominance, his powerlessness: "on the one hand woman is reduced to the lowest stage ofhumiliation, while on the other hand she dominates.

M The first public reading of the story was in October 1889; by December 1890, Sophie was afraid that she was pregnant again (but she was spared a fourteenth pregnancy). 6 INTERCOl'RSE IN A MAN-MADE WORLD Sophie's view of the great man was not reverential. One day at tea he spoke of a vegetarian menu that he had read and liked: almonds and bread. In her diary Sophie wrote: "I expect the person who wrote the menu practises vegetarianism as much as the author of the Kreutzer Sonata practises chastity.

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