Book: Bridget Jones’s Diary Author: Helen Fielding Published: 1996 Ambivalent is a good word to describe my feelings about this book. It was an easy humorous read, but it made the feminist in me rage. I saw the movie years ago. I recall feeling mild amusement.
The book is set-up as a diary, and Bridget is obsessed with her weight and finding a boyfriend. As though women are incapable of having any interests outside the man in their lives, or getting a man in their lives. Not only is this notion offensive, it’s destructive.
Shame on you Helen Fielding for confirming all the worst things that culture tells us to believe about ourselves. Anyone that hangs all of their happiness, hopes, and dreams on their significant other is promised one thing. Disappointment. You’ve just put all the weight of your life on this relationship and your future partner. No human being can, nor should, live up to this sort of pressure. Bridget Jones is delusional. Relationships at their best are a mixed bag of wonderful and difficult. You will have beautiful moments; you will have terrible moments. That’s what it means to build a life with another person.
I wish I could say the snarky British humor trumps the GOD AWFUL MESSAGES TO WOMEN in this book. It doesn’t. I don’t need Helen Fielding telling me to obsess about my weight and finding a man (or woman in my case), as those messages are constant in our culture. I want to bitch-slap Bridget Jones. And Helen Fielding.