Tuesday, February 15, 2005

Aesthetic Realism Arts and Sciences Class given by Eli Siegel; Part 2 of a report by Lynette Abel

Here is the conclusion of the Arts and Science class of June 13, 1975 given by Eli Siegel

The immediacy of understanding the opposites of respect and contempt was central in the next discussion as Mr. Siegel took up a narrative, entitled "What became of the Man I Married," from the book Mrs. Success, A Report by Lois Wyse. Lois Wyse a writer of verse and also a social critic became interested in interviewing Polly Winters when she read in her letter "I believe Living patterns Research Institute might be interested in a not so untypical situation of a poor boy that reached the top and left his wife and three children after nineteen years of a good marriage." In the interview Polly Winters talks of how she didn't do any of the things you always hear about. "I didn't get fat or stop enjoying sex or refuse to go on trips." Throughout this interview it was felt by persons in class, Mrs. Winters though deeply pained, leaves out a great deal. One gets a sense that she took this poor boy from the other side of the tracks and cultivated him. Mr. Siegel asked, "Can a woman want to find someone with ability and then arrange him?" Mrs. Winters needed to know what Aesthetic Realism shows, that love is a oneness of criticism and encouragement. She didn't see that she got a great deal of importance out of owning a successful man. " To her, said Mr. Siegel, "he was a magnificent toy."

Throughout this narrative Polly Winters is questioning, but she doesn't get to any clear explanations as to why her marriage ended. Eli Siegel stated, "Aesthetic Realism believes that if a person is seen as honestly trying to respect someone, there will be no separation. The hope to respect," he continued, "has been the thing lacking in marriages."

* * *

To see writing, including book reviews and poems by Eli Siegel click here