Her style cannot be classified as realist, modernist or postmodernist, because she has delat with all possible themes and aspects of contemporary life, like mental breakdown, difficult childhood, racism, etc. Focuses on the quest for an authentic self through the process of sexual awakening reflecting the rejection of Victorian notions to propriety. In To room 19 for example Lessing centres on her character’s internal quest for an authentic self grounded in the historical moment of the story, here in the early 1960s, when women were struggling to find an identity outside of the domestic sphere. The protagonist experiences a battle between accepting her traditional role as a wife and a mother or her search for absolute freedom. We must bear in mind that during World War II, women were encouraged to take jobs because the men we in the battlefields, nevertheless when the war finished women were forced to give up their jobs and also their sense of independency. Women started to fight for their rights and in the 1960s America enacted the Civil Rights that prohibited sexual and racial employment. Susan marries when the “intelligent” thing is to do so and thus finds herself engaged between the aforementioned feelings. This story as stated by the narrator is “a story…about a failure in intelligence” and what leads Susan to commit suicide is the fact that it is the only way she sees to be free.
The golden notebook, 1962. Radical examination of the novel form. There’s a frame called Free Women, which is a conventional short novel which could stand by itself but is divided into five section, separated by stages of four notebooks. The notebooks are kept by Anna Wulf, a central character of Free Women. From their fragment can come the Golden Notebook. The riter’s aim was to shape a book that could talk through the way it was shaped. The form breaks with all the convention of classic realism, the novel openly states it reflexivity and thematically and formally, explicitly and implicitly, raises questions about the nature and function of the novel. Critique of Realism evident in its structure, dense and difficult novel. The sections entitled “free Women” represent a conventional novel and are followed by extract from four notebooks to show how much of one’s life is left out from the conventional novel, the black notebook has to do with Anna the writer, red (politic), yellow (stories of Anna’s experiences) and blue (tries to be a diary). Lessing was deeply concerned with the issue of subjectivity. Anna , far from the external, objective, reality of 19c. authors, realises tat the only reality is the individual’s subjective perception. She states that writing of oneself is writing about others because your pains, emotions, problems can’t only be yours, which suggest subjectivity itself is a social construct. Anna, the author, draws the reader’s attention to the limitation of the Notebooks themselves and she has the sensation of them being completely untruthful when she first reads them through. Each book acts as a different version of reality, are reality encoded in a discourse which operates in accordance with its own conventions; the reader faces various types of discourse: literary, political, psychoanalytic and sexual. The problems that Anna encounters when trying to tell about her experience from the point of view of these discourses demonstrates the way each discourse tends to fix Anna in a specific subject position, which is always a marginalized one: a woman, an artist, an ex-colonial, Leftwing in politics. The subject is at the same time constructed and split by discourse. The multiplicity of discourses within the GN is a demonstration of that splitting which is a central theme of the novel. In the Yellow Notebook Anna’s notes describe the splitting process involved in constructing sexual identity. The shadow figure is the “third” in the protagonist’s (Ella) relationship with her lover. Ella wants to turn into the shadowy ideal to get Paul’s love and approval; she has a new personality that has been created by his discourse about her and she has rejected her real self because she discovers he loves the creation she becomes. Not only woman are subjected to ideology, men are as well, but they are able to maintain their power, e.g. Paul is also split because he is capable of laughing at his discourse of psychoanalysis and at the same time he feels angry because Ella tries to link his three different personalities. Discourse can be defined in term of what it includes as in what it excludes and each discourse is inscribed with the values of a particular ideology and there appears not to be any place where the individual voice can be heard. The notion of free speech is an illusion and the individual is already moulded by a system, his choices aren’t free, but the result of a false dichotomy already imposed by our culture. We can see how when Anna tries to record the objective reality of her existence in the Blue Notebook she fails, instead of being something personal, the diary is replaced with news, even when she tries to summarize her entries later on being more objective, we perceive that the lack of subjectivity doesn’t bring us closer to the truth. Anna tries to communicate something more subjective through the psychoanalyst she nicknames Mother Sugar, but the latter tells her that the problem is that she is repressing subjectivity, the solution Anna is given is another kind of discourse, the language of psychoanalysis. Anna wants to capture her individual subjective reality in her own terms and decides to write a diary of a particular day as truthfully as she can, but then perceives that the fact of writing down these events transforms the nature of them and brings a consciousness to those events which wasn’t primarily there, which results in falsifying emotionalism. Thus, Anna finds that all words become meaningless and that in the end all experiences fall into a pattern. The only way then of using language that isn’t already inscribed in ideologies is by using parody, but soon Anna realises that even this will fail and that there is no way for the writer to control the way in which this discourse will be read, unless there is a the reader has a previous inclination to distance himself from ideological practices, or, unless the writer produces a context against which the parody can be measured, i.e. the multiple discourse offered in The Golden Notebook.