Question of the day.

What was the last book you purchased/borrowed from the library?

My answer:

I wanted to read a book by the Polish positivist writer Eliza Orzeszkowa called “Marta”, so I downloaded it from our online library for the blind. Actually, some of the books of Orzeszkowa are compulsory readings at Polish schools, so I’ve never had particularly warm feelings to her works as I found most of compulsory readings unbelievably boring, but I wanted to read that particular book, not for anything particular, just because I thought it could be interesting and thought provoking. It was, I read it in two days. It describes fate of women in Poland at the time of positivism, their occupational situation, how all the fields were dominated by men, to put it very basically. It is described on the example of a woman called Marta, who has been just widowed at the beginning of the book, and although her financial situation in her marriage was very good and stable, and she led a happy life, from now on she becomes poor and is forced to look for a job for herself to be able to feed her little daughter. She is an educated gentrywoman but her education turns out to be not enough to find a job just anywhere, it’s just what usually young ladies were taught, a bit of everything, but nothing deep enough to be really useful in life long term. It is a very dramatic book and it describes how Marta is slowly forced by life to beg to provide at least basic things for her daughter, and finally when her daughter becomes ill with severe bronchitis because of the incredibly poor life conditions and Marta isn’t able to give her what she needs to recover, she commits suicide. So as I said it’s very dramatic, but also incredibly thought-provoking, and Orzeszkowa has definitely a talent for describing people, their emotions and stuff, which made it even more pleasant to read, as I really like detailed descriptions, if skillfully written. So I devoured the book much quicker than I thought I would. I supposed it can be very interesting as I said, but I thought it also can be much harder to actually get through, so was quite surprised.

How about you? 🙂

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