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The Diary Of Anais Nin, Volume 7 (1966-1974) Paperback – October 14, 1981
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Yes, I know this will be marked down as unhelpful. I do that to less than positive reviews too. But I am a disappointed fan.
Volume 1 of Nin's diary, covering 1931-34, was published in the late 1960s when Henry Miller, her lover during the time period covered by this volume and Hugo Guiler, Anais's first husband (whom she never divorced) were both still alive. As a consequence, there are many omissions and edits for the sake of discretion. Those omissions were revealed when _Henry and June_, also taken from Nin's diaries, was published after the death of all protagonists.
Consequently, a volume that appears to be frank and honest upon a first reading looks somewhat less so when compared with the alternative version contained in _Henry and June_, which contains material expurgated from the first year of this volume. Confused yet?
The more Anais Nin slips away from us, the more we seek her. When reading this volume I come to believe that there is something to be said for Nin's position that she sought to portray a deeper psychological truth and the objective facts were less important.
Nin, the daughter of Cuban pianist Joaquin Nin and singer Rosa Culmell, started keeping a diary when, as a young girl, she traveled with her mother and brother to New York from Europe after her father abandoned the family for one of his mistresses. On the ship she began a letter to her father describing their experiences, which was never sent and instead marked the beginning of a lifelong project of meticulously documenting her life.
At the beginning of this diary, in 1931, Nin is back in France, where she was born, and has just finished her biography of D.H. Lawrence, whose writing she felt had so profoundly changed her life that she wanted to pay homage to him. She writes:
"You live like this, sheltered, in a delicate world, and you believe you are living. Then you read a book (Lady Chatterley, for instance), or you take a trip...and you discover that you are not living, that you are hibernating. The symptoms of hibernating are easily detectable: first, restlessness. The second symptom (when hibernating becomes dangerous and might degenerate into death): absence of pleasure. That is all. It appears like an innocuous illness. Monotony, boredom, death. Millions live like this (or die like this) without knowing it. They work in offices. They drive a car. They picnic with their families. They raise children.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Herein lies the mind and soul of a woman seeking excellence and compassion in life!Published 6 days ago by Boothe
It is a wonderful narrative. She is allowing you into her world and her psyche. Amazingly deep insights on life and herself. Read morePublished 12 months ago by Lou Ann Stowell
Anias Nin writes beautifully. There may be omissions or bending of truth, but her words will take you on a mesmerizing journey. Read morePublished 13 months ago by DT
if you like her fiction--better yet, if you love passages of her fiction--this is for you. Or even if you don't. Read morePublished 14 months ago by Christina M. Ward