Travel Reading

I have got to choose my travel reading more carefully. I was re-reading Elgin’s _Native Tongue_ preparatory to teaching it, on the way to CT, my stomach roiling at points, very conscious of the man, a stranger, sitting right next to me. It’s a brutal book, and even though it’s dated in many ways, and way more gender essentialist than I buy into, the fact that it has so much power to upset me indicates that there’s still plenty of truth to Elgin’s characterizations of patriarchy and how it affects women on a daily basis.

And now, waiting to fly back home, I’ve started Clinton’s memoir, _What Happened_, and it’s heartbreaking and infuriating, and I don’t particularly enjoy getting teary in airports. “On one occasion, an older woman dragged her adult daughter by the arm to come talk to me and ordered her to apologize for not voting — which she did, head bowed in contrition. I wanted to stare right in her eyes and say, ‘You didn’t vote? How could you not vote?! You abdicated your responsibility as a citizen at the worst possible time! And now you want *me* to make *you* feel better?” Of course, I didn’t say any of that.'”

It’s enough to make you find something nice and fluffy to read, a cookbook, perhaps, and flee to the woods, avoiding people entirely.

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