On Friday, I mentioned that I'd found Amanda Craig's site in an odd way. O.K. -- here is the attempt to explain how I started out by searching for information about The Surrendered Wife (!?)...
My daughter was asked to take part in a book club discussion that was going to be filmed for a documentary. The book was The Surrendered Wife by Laura Doyle. (Have you heard of it? I had not, but after my conversation with Amelia, I immediately began Googling.)
Dear Daughter read the book and approached the meeting ready for a lively discussion, and please believe me, Dear Daughter is NOT a surrendered wife. Evidently, she first tried to be pleasant, but... she can get out of hand. When it became evident that even her friends who had laughed at the book, changed their tunes in front of the camera, Amelia became... well, more aggressive. At one point, they stopped the cameras, sat down beside her and asked her if she understood what the documentary was about. Obviously, she did not.
"You mean I'm not supposed to give my opinion?"
"Certainly, you can give your opinion, but do you understand what this is about?"
By the time the cameras were ready to roll again, Amelia was fuming. (Did I mention that she is NOT a surrendered wife.) She went from commenting that some of the book is common sense to a remark about Stepford Wives. At one point, she said, "Well, I would like to know who was 'servicing' Doyle's husband while she was on book tour." Uh oh. Maybe "servicing" is not the word she used. But you get the idea.
She suspects that they will either edit her out completely or even worse, edit her comments (while she was still trying to be tactful) to make her sound like a surrendered wife.
So...that's the background. I got online and began hunting for information about the book. Mind you, I'm a bit embarrassed that I'd never even heard of a book that made The New York Time's Best Seller list.
And I came across Amanda Craig's article in The Sunday Times (Sept. 2004). Craig's attempts to become "surrendered" confused her husband, then shocked him:
“Oh God,” he says. “You’re pregnant again, aren’t you? You’ve done a Cherie Blair.”
At this point, I confess all. The relief on his face makes him suddenly look ten years younger. He roars with laughter and says, “But I married you for being exactly who you are. I don’t want some stupid woman who agrees with me all the time. I’ll tell you what, though: you can be a surrendered wife today, but only if I can be a surrendered husband tomorrow.”
(had to Google Cherie Blair - who among other things became pregnant again at 45)
From that point, I began reading her other articles and found that I enjoyed them very much. She can criticize without appearing bitter or aggressive. Her book reviews are informative. Her articles interest me on a variety of levels.
There you go. One thing leads to another. From laughing 'til I cried listening to Amelia's version of the "book club" (by the way, this was arranged strictly for the "documentary"), to checking out the the book itself, to the intelligent, intriguing articles of Amanda Craig. I love this kind of journey!
The "documentary" is supposed to air on the BBC in May. Most likely without Amelia.
Oh, and one more thing, if you are interested in the book and can't read, audio programs and seminars are available.