Any Doris Lessing fans out there?


No, I’m not a fan and although I attempted several of her books when I was young, I gave up on most of them halfway through.  One book that gripped me from beginning to end was The Fifth Child.  I remember reading it and feeling puzzled, wondering how such a situation could ever occur; how could parents possibly be afraid of their own son?  Now, after reading this heartbreaking – and groundbreaking – Salon article, I am starting to understand.  Don’t forget to read the hundreds of letters in response, you may be amazed.  Here’s one quote that really struck me: “I’ve cared for people suffering from all sorts of mental disorders in the course of my working life. One thing I have noticed though across the years & across the world, is the urge to get quite mystical & wax lyrical about children suffering various conditions while being simply horrified & repulsed by those children once they reach adulthood. Toddlers & young children bring out the empathy, warmth & affection in society. Large lumbering adults bring out quite the opposite.”

Looks like Japan isn’t the only country in the world having problems dealing openly with these issues.


2 comments on “Any Doris Lessing fans out there?

  1. Karen says:

    what a sad story. Think of those who don’t have the money she does to try and find answers or pay for meds or hospitals. That must be real hopelessness. Those of us who have “normal” children should never take that for granted. It’s purely accidental.

  2. Miko says:

    Yes, terribly sad and makes you think “there but for the grace of God.” Bringing children into the world is like drawing lots, you just never know what you’ll end up with.

    Interesting that it seems to be on the rise, though, especially here in Japan. I can’t figure that one out.

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