Eternal Womanhood

Even if human society has always been haunted by an almost imperceptible misogynic fluid, the selfsame society has enabled the advent of remarkable women in every walk of life, from politics to business to culture or science, from Sappho to Marie Curie, from Clara Schumann to George Sand, from Emily Bronte to Marguerite Yourcenar, and from Joan of Arc to Anna Frank. One may be happy to have seen and listened to Maria Callas "live on stage", or written an essay about Simone de Beauvoir, or seen and written about Marlene Dietrich's movies, or read Anais Nin's diary and Iris Murdoch's novels.Romanian culture is no exception: novels, plays or musical scores consecrated to enduring fame genuine heroines, memorable characters, exemplary lives, whether fictitious or real: Ana Lugojana, Queen Chiajna, Zoe, Mrs. T., Adela, Mara, Vitoria Lipan, Donna Alba, and so many more; like Norma, Carmen, Tosca, Madame Butterfly, Emma Bovary, Anna Karenina or Nastassia Filippovna, which became part of world spirituality, there is a recognized hierarchy of values in Romanian culture as well. Poetesses, novelists, singers, stage directors, doctors count among the many occupations that crossed in large numbers to the "feminine side," defying prejudice. These heroines, projections of material life, with their charm, mystery, grace, faith, in addition to intelligence, talent, force and intuition have brought fame to their authors, but some have also become models, changed history, originated trends. Will "Bovaryism" ever fade away?This issue, like the previous ones, is not prone to analysis; it rules out hierarchies and puts off classification and genres. PLURAL attempts once again to bring to light a fascinating world – women-characters that populate Romanian literature, music and art. The high-class gallery is accompanied by a few prestigious women-painters, poetesses and essayists.

by Aurora Fabritius