Book Review: Committed: A Skeptic Makes Peace with Marriage ~Elizabeth Gilbert
I so enjoyed Elizabeth Gilbert’s EAT, PRAY, LOVE book, which is going to be released in movie form this August (2010). The writing was 5 stars and the memoir was fascinating about recovery from divorce. The book was hugely popular – a best seller.
Gilbert’s writing style is impressive and I have now read several of her other books and numerous other entries on her list of short stories. I even watched her on the TED lectures explain that when one has success it does not always mean that was the noteworthy ‘5 minutes of fame” and the ride is complete. We will all be graced with another time or two with the greatness of her writing.
Although COMMITTED is another memoir, this one about her needing to get a VISA so that she and her partner could get married and live together in the USA, it is a very different book. So far it has not received the rave reviews or even the reader’s support. I think they just heard that it was not as “GOOD” and so did not bother.
I thought the book was powerful and inspiring. I wondered how I could get more people to read it, because I still think lots and lots of folks saunter down the aisle not even thinking about a plan for their marriage. Many, many really do not have a clue about what they are committing to.
It is just something everyone does – this getting married business.
Gilbert has pulled history off the shelf and enlivened our knowledge base with interesting sociology; wrapping it around their personal struggles to get all the paperwork completed. Her interviews with Grandparents, children, and family members are full of delightful analysis and discovery. I so enjoyed her attempts at understanding marriage in the context of differing cultures from historic to contemporary situations. Marriage is changing around the world – often driven by economics alone and with disregard for history and humanity.
I underlined and highlighted large portions of the book and referenced at least 4 more books to read in the future. I was hard pressed to limit the number of quotes I wanted to share – but I did press down to two that I thought were significant resolutions:
We all are attempting….to force our marriage to “empower without disempowering, enable without disenabling, fulfill without burdening. “ ~ Bauman
Marriage is not an act of private prayer. Instead, it is both a public and a private concern, with real-world consequences. ~ Brian
I believe EPL is a great book about someone rediscovering their own sense of self-recovery, and it is her story, not mine. I believe Committed takes us into a deeper sense of where this institution of marriage is headed and how rapidly it is evolving. This is a story for all of us to be awakened – not just entertained.
I am giving this book to my partner for our 33rd wedding anniversary and hopefully it will make for some interesting discussion over the next few months. I have asked all three of my daughters to put this on their reading list. I think it is definitely 5 stars.
This book is available from this site and from most of your favorite bookstores and KINDLE.
What do you think is the purpose of marriage? Do you think it is evolving or changing? Did I inspire you to at least think about reading this book? Hope so…..looking forward to your delightful insights.