Of humble origin and melancholy disposition, Strindberg was consumed by an insatiable desire for knowledge and a need for authentic existence. He tried many occupations of diverse kinds before establishing a reputation as a highly distinctive avant-garde writer and playwright. His seventy plays ranged from neo-romanticism through naturalism to expressionism treating historical as well as contemporary aspects of existence.
Strindberg was a confessional writer by nature, and much of his literary output concerns his unhappy life marred by three disastrous marriages. Bitterly disappointed in love and apparently tormented by intermittent impotence, he gave vent to his frustrations through generic denunciations of women.
Although he claimed that “the presence of women tend to elevate men,” and that man cannot survive without a woman, he staunchly maintained, “Every healthy man is a woman hater.”
August Strindberg (l849-l912) -- Swedish dramatist, novelist, short-story writer, poet, and essayist who is arguably the most influential of all Scandinavian authors
healthy man is a woman hater--yet he cannot survive if he does not ally himself
with his enemy.
and effeminate perverts among men have an adoration for women.
the beginning and the end--for us men, at any rate. In and by themselves they
[Woman is] . . . perhaps a sort of larva, or pupa,
out of whose somnambulist life a man will be created.
amount to nothing by themselves but mean everything to us, and are everything
for us. They are our honor and our shame; our greatest joy, and our deepest
pain and distress; our redemption and our fall; our reward and our punishment;
our strength and our weakness.
domain of motherhood [is] where woman comes into greatest joy of life, the only
true joy--and which she divines instinctively beforehand.
love is an active verb, and woman” is a passive noun. He loves--she is loved.
does not love; it is man who loves and woman who is loved.
is impossible to know where you are with women. Whatever you do is wrong.
begrudge a man paternal happiness and will deprive him of it even at the risk
of drawing upon themselves the suspicion that they are whores. But give a hint
of that suspicion and all h-l is let loose!
women complain of disappointment in the matter of physical satisfaction. But a
man would rather die before he complained. It never occurs to a woman to think
that her husband may also have miscalculated about her. Oh this eternal torment
of mutual recriminations, as if the bedroom held the keys to paradise!
sought to discover in women an angel--on whose wings I could soar--and instead
I fell into the arms of an earth spirit who blanketed me with bedding stuffed
from her wings until I could not breathe. I had gone in search of an Ariel and
found a Caliban.
presence of a woman tends to elevate men.