So I’m sad and lonely in not being able to join our Carl, our Ralph, and two semi-modern women in LA this week. So I thought I’d post the conclusion to my TRUE GRIT study as compensation:
We have to think hard about Mattie as a modern woman: Shes all about lawfulness, mathematical order/calculative reason, and spirited partisanship. We dont usually connect math with anger, measure with indignation. Mattie has, to a remarkable extent, the Platonic control of her desires, but obviously in a mutilated form. She is unplayful, unerotic, unserene, unfriendly, unloving, anxious, and worried. Her interior life is too tough to bear with serenity or even acceptance. Thats why she doesnt really have her anger under control. But theres something wonderful in her living her meritocratic judgmentalism, in mostly not holding others to a higher standard than she holds herself. Mattie displays one version of what it means to live as a free person in a free country. But she knows well enoughand whines more than a littlethat she was not given what she needs to have chosen the better part, the part displayed by her mother in being in love in the present and unobsessive about the future.