The pleasure of reading biography, like that of reading letters, derives from the universal hunger to penetrate other lives.
The vanity of men, a constant insult to women, is also the ground for the implicit feminine claim of superior sensitivity and morality.
Theories by women about women have only recently begun to appear in print. Theories by men about women are abundant.
Poring over fragments of other people's lives, peering into their bedrooms when they don't know we're there, we thrill to the glamour and the power of secret knowledge, partly detoxified but also heightened by being shared.
Women serve as guardians of culture, upholders of society.
Like the adolescent, the artist is a dreamer and a revolutionary; like the adolescent, he often finds his accomplishment inadequate to his imaginings. But his dream, setting him apart, helps him to escape the burden of the real.
The clich? that women, more consistently than men, turn inward for sustenance seems to mean, in practice, that women have richly defined the ways in which imagination creates possibility; possibility that society denies.
Gossip, even when it avoids the sexual, bears around it a faint flavor of the erotic.
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