25 The Bell Jar Quotes That All Budding Feminists Should Read | Kidadl

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25 The Bell Jar Quotes That All Budding Feminists Should Read

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We are here with a collection of best quotes from Bell Jar that all the budding feminists should read that revolves around a feminist protagonist in the society of the '50s.

The protagonist Sylvia Plath as Esther Greenwood is the main character of the novel, which deals with various issues of trying to establish her in a society simultaneously dealing with issues such as confinement and entrapment that describes the metaphor ‘bell jar’ as the novel is named. The story talks about how Esther tries various things to overcome the feeling of confinement and self-doubt again, making it challenging to find escape and hope.

Esther’s character is seen as determined and emerges as someone with characteristic humor, as newly “patched, retreaded and approved for the road.” It talks about how Esther discovers more about her strengths and mental health, which helped her survive and boosted her confidence.

Let’s take a look at some of the best 'The Bell Jar' quotes to inspire you too. If you enjoy reading this article, you may also like 'The Yellow Wallpaper' quotes and 'The Awakening' quotes.
 

Sylvia Plath The Bell Jar Quotes

'The Bell Jar' is a novel by Sylvia Plath that is considered feminist, even in present times and deals with issues relating to feminism such as power, sexual double standard, the quest for identity and search for self-love, and the demands of nurturing. Let’s take a look at some of the best quotes from 'The Bell Jar' that every feminist would appreciate.

The central theme of the novel is empowerment.

1. “If neurotic is wanting two mutually exclusive things at one and the same time, then I’m neurotic as hell. I’ll be flying back and forth between one mutually exclusive thing and another for the rest of my days.”

- Sylvia Plath.

2. “When I was nineteen, pureness was the great issue. Instead of the world being divided up into Catholics and Protestants or Republicans and Democrats or white men and black men or even men and women, I saw the world divided into people who had slept with somebody and people who hadn’t, and this seemed the only really significant difference between one person and another. I thought a spectacular change would come over me the day I crossed the boundary line.”

- Sylvia Plath.

3. “I couldn’t the see the point of getting up. I had nothing to look forward to.”

- Sylvia Plath.

4. “The last thing I wanted was infinite security and to be the place an arrow shoots off from. I wanted change and excitement and to shoot off in all directions myself, like the colored arrows from a Fourth of July rocket.”

- Sylvia Plath.

5. “I couldn’t stand the idea of a woman having to have a single pure life and a man being able to have a double life, one pure and one not.”

- Sylvia Plath.

6. “So I began to think maybe it was true that when you were married and had children it was like being brainwashed, and afterward you went about as numb as a slave in a totalitarian state.”

- Sylvia Plath.

7. “This hotel – the Amazon – was for women only, and they were mostly girls my age with wealthy parents [...] and they were all going to posh secretarial schools like Katy Gibbs, where they had to wear hats and stockings and gloves to class, or they had just graduated from places like Katy Gibbs and were secretaries to executives and junior executives and simply hanging around in New York waiting to get married to some career man or other.”

- Sylvia Plath.

Inspirational Bell Jar Quotes

The novel covers essential phases of life and deals with situations where Esther fights with depression and thoughts of suicide. But later on she narrowly escapes the eye of a tornado to emerges as a strong woman for herself and the outside world. Let’s take a look at some of the most inspirational Sylvia Plath quotes 'The Bell Jar' that will pull you up as well.

The books is a source of inspiration for the readers even today.

8. “I shut my eyes and all the world drops dead;

I lift my eyes and all is born again.”

- Sylvia Plath.

9. “The trouble was I had been adequate all along, I simply hadn’t thought about it.”

- Sylvia Plath.

10.  “I am climbing to my freedom, freedom from fear, freedom from marrying the wrong person, like Buddy Willard, just because of sex, freedom from the Florence Crittenden Homes where all the poor girls go who should have been fitted out like me, because what they did, they would do anyway...”

- Sylvia Plath.

11.  “I thought the most beautiful thing in the world must be shadow.”

- Sylvia Plath.

12.  “I took a deep breath and listened to the old bray of my heart. I am. I am. I am.”

- Sylvia Plath.

13.  “To the person in the bell jar, blank and stopped as a dead baby, the world itself is the bad dream.”

- Sylvia Plath.

14.  “There was a uniformity, as if they had lain for a long time on a shelf, out of the sunlight, under siftings of pale, fine dust.”

- Sylvia Plath.

15.  “The trouble was, I hated the idea of serving men in any way. I wanted to dictate my own thrilling letters.”

- Sylvia Plath.

16.  “It was comforting to know that I has fallen and could fall no farther.”

- Sylvia Plath.

Famous Bell Jar Quotes

As a controversial and only novel by Sylvia Plath, 'The Bell Jar' speaks a ton about her struggles with depression and the outside world as a woman who never gave up. Let’s take a look at some of the most famous Bell Jar quotes for you to read.

17.  “I felt my lungs inflate with the onrush of scenery—air, mountains, trees, people. I thought, “This is what it is to be happy.”

- Sylvia Plath.

18.  “Wherever I sat—on the deck of a ship or at a street café in Paris or Bangkok—I would be sitting under the same glass bell jar, stewing in my own sour air.”

- Sylvia Plath.

19.  “I wanted each and every one of them, but choosing one meant losing all the rest.”

- Sylvia Plath.

20.  “The skin of my wrist looked so white and defenseless that I couldn’t do it.”

- Sylvia Plath.

21.  “I saw the years of my life spaced along a road in the form of telephone poles, threaded together by wires. I counted one, two, three ... nineteen telephone poles, and then the wires dangled into space, and try as I would, I couldn’t see a single pole beyond the nineteenth.”

- Sylvia Plath.

22.  “Death must be so beautiful. To lie in the soft brown earth, with the grasses waving above one’s head, and listen to silence. To have no yesterday, and no tomorrow. To forget time, to forgive life, to be at peace.”

- Sylvia Plath.

23.  “The bell jar hung, suspended, a few feet above my head. I was open to the circulating air.”

- Sylvia Plath.

24.  “The silence depressed me. It wasn’t the silence of silence. It was my own silence.”

- Sylvia Plath.

25.  “But when I took up my pen, my hand made big, jerky letters like those of a child, and the lines sloped down the page from left to right almost diagonally, as if they were loops of string lying on the paper, and someone had come along and blown them askew.”

- Sylvia Plath

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly quotes for everyone to enjoy! If you liked our suggestions for 'The Bell Jar' quotes, then why not take a look at Zora Neale Hurston quotes or 'The House On Mango Street' quotes.

Written By
Kidadl Team

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