‘Committed’ by Elizabeth Gilbert
‘Committed – A Love Story’ is indeed a love story of the author Elizabeth Gilbert and Felipe, a Brazilian-born Australian citizen. However it is so much more than that. It is a study of the institution of marriage. Interwoven into their story Gilbert explores different cultures, both Western and Eastern, and their differing traditions regarding marriage. She argues powerfully that marriage has been constantly adapting over the centuries and that some of the characteristics that we take for granted in the West are very different when looked at from other temporal and cultural perspectives.
All of that may sound a bit heavy but this is a book that anyone can relate to as it is very much her story. Her previous book ‘Eat, Pray, Love’ told the story of her divorce and all that followed from that. ‘Committed’ takes that story a step further as she and Felipe tentatively explore the requirement of marriage being laid on them by the US Homeland Security Department.
This is a book for anyone who is married or thinking of it, as it opens up all kinds of questions about our expectations, hopes and fears about what marriage means to each of us. The old cliché that this is a book which you will find difficult to put down is actually true of this one – it’s extremely readable and very thought-provoking.