Yes, I know this is unkind of me


No, it’s not about her looks. It’s about her look. It may well be specific to this one piccie. But the impression is that each and every idea that anyone else has which isn’t agreed with entirely is just so stupid as to not even need comment. Just clearly and obviously wrong because it’s not shared.

BTW, it’s Sally Rooney who apparently is a novelist of some repute.

38 thoughts on “Yes, I know this is unkind of me”

  1. Promotion pics are interesting, aren’t they? The subject must have quite a say over the final product. Yet we have male actors and novelists doing that ridiculous chin-cupping pose that’s meant to make them look both visionary and shrewd. Females usually go for the smouldering come-hither look, if they can manage it – and frequently if they can’t. Women footballers must spend a lot of time deciding (“break your shin, or pout?”) and the results are nasty.

    And now this. It’s disturbing, because it’s hard to work out what she’s trying to tell us. My guess is intelligence, of a sort, confidence, and autism.

    I read her famous novel two years ago, forgotten the title. My son (28) thought it was good. I thought it was a pile of shit, completely unbelievable unless young people have radically changed for the worse.

  2. I think its an interesting portrait. Zero make up which either requires zero ego or a v big invulnerable one. But still, a bit difficult to judge an author by her cover.

  3. She is a bog-standard commie cow. Looking for publicity for her verbal ordure book.

    Mossad should send a team to give her a good “talking to”. All dressed as Hassidic Jews just for the laughs.

  4. The thing I find odd about Marxism and Communism is that it is still socially acceptable to believe in it. If you believe in National Socialism, you really have to keep quiet about it. Falangism – Ditto. And for good reasons. However, Marxism and Communism has and still does cause death and misery in the world and you can get away with opening supporting it. Support a brand of fascism and you risk being arrested and spending time in prison.

  5. Sam – I thought it was a pile of shit, completely unbelievable unless young people have radically changed for the worse

    Are you aware of something called TikTok? 🙁

  6. Salamander
    It used to be OK to sympathise with fascism. The Irish sent official condolences on the death of Adolf Hitler. And Rooney’s Irish, isn’t she?


    Provided it’s not called fascism you’re ok Salamander. But you’ll have noticed how the white untermensch fit neatly into the modern version of this nonsense.

  8. A superior sneer mixed with indifferent boredom.

    As if to say, “Don’t bother me with your thoughts. I am far more sophisticated and intelligent than you. Nothing you can say is as clever as my opinion.”

  9. I believe the appropriate term is ‘resting bitch face’.

    I searched online and it is a consistent appearance, so it is more looks than look.

    The left side of her face looks like it’s held hostage by the right hand side. The right side is controlled by the left brain, which is also responsible for calculation rather than feelings.

  10. There must be a gazillion books about upper middle class art people ennui and why does anyone want to read them? OK, if they’ve got some ideas, if they challenge pre-existing thought, maybe. But it’s not like Rooney is taking the piss out of commie bellends.

    Too many women in their 20s who should be knocked up and changing nappies to give them some purpose in life.

  11. Extract from a review in the Atlantic which quotes Rooney’s work extensively so you can get a flavour of it. Presented without comment.

    Rooney is a self-described Marxist, and I suspect that she would enjoy Vanity Fair’s neat illustration of a point she makes in Normal People about the way books can function as cultural currency. “It was culture as class performance,” thinks a character at a reading, “literature fetishized for its ability to take educated people on false emotional journeys, so that they might afterward feel superior to the uneducated people whose emotional journeys they liked to read about.”

    Though Rooney’s characters have scalding contempt for capitalism and its trappings, it’s easy to see how Normal People could have snuck into the handbag slideshow. Politics in Rooney’s novel are often ambient rather than explicit, submerged under the surface of a love story about, as Rooney writes, “two people who, over the course of several years, apparently could not leave one another alone,” Marianne and Connell, who spend four years alternately pursuing and withdrawing from each other.

    One critic recently noted that the politics of Rooney’s novels were largely “gestural,” with airy mentions of Gaza or austerity protests but not much radical substance. Another suggested that her politics were essentially decorative, “more setting than subject.” I disagree. I don’t think Rooney is garnishing her love story with politics. She’s embedding politics closely and rigorously in the love story, showing how relationships can function like miniature states, and how political principles can work on an intimate scale, in the interactions of two, three, or four people.

    In interviews, Rooney often talks about growing up hearing Marx’s dictum “From each according to his ability, to each according to his needs” from her parents, and absorbing it as if it were a universal rule, maybe something Jesus said, or, as one interviewer from The Cut put it, something somebody might embroider on a pillow. In Normal People, characters have different things at different times: money, social capital, looks. The novel suggests the possibility of a setup in which these advantages are shared and redistributed according to need. Call it a Marxism of the heart.

    … Marianne’s status “elevated Connell to the status of rich-adjacent: someone for whom surprise birthday parties are thrown and cushy jobs are procured out of nowhere.” The father of one of her new friends “was one of the people who had caused the financial crisis—not figuratively, one of the actual people involved.”

    They circle, always seeming to misunderstand each other at some crucial moment. At one point, Connell loses a job and can’t pay rent for the summer in Dublin. He tries to ask to stay with Marianne, but she thinks that he is saying he wants to leave town. They break up. This represents her failure of imagination and his failure of courage, but also suggests that independence is not an uncomplicated virtue. The solution is obvious, and she has something he needs. Why shouldn’t people give one another food, and money, and places to stay?

    … Rooney allows Connell to come to Marianne’s rescue when she is threatened by angry or violent men, not once but three times: when she is groped in a nightclub, bullied by her boyfriend (the one whose dad caused the financial crisis), and, finally, abused by her brother. A novel espousing independence as a straightforward virtue might have made her come to her own rescue. Connell isn’t helping her as an archetypical knight, but he is still a man and aware of the power this confers him in particular circumstances. The book suggests that people can use their advantages for one another—that personal qualities, abilities, status, and other advantages can act like wealth or goods in a socialist society, for common benefit. This extends far outside of gender, of course: Though Marianne initially fails to see that Connell needs a place to stay, she offers him other things, including social protection and money when he’s been mugged. From each according to their abilities, to each according to their needs.

    In some ways, Normal People feels like an extension of Rooney’s flashier first novel, Conversations With Friends, which follows two college students who form a fraught relationship with an older couple. Frances and her best friend/ex-girlfriend Bobbi have long, drily funny and unresolved text and IM conversations about love and capitalism. Here’s an oft-quoted passage:

    Bobbi: if you look at love as something other than an interpersonal phenomenon

    Bobbi: and try to understand it as a social value system

    Bobbi: it’s both antithetical to capitalism, in that it challenges the axiom of selfishness

    Bobbi: which dictates the whole logic of inequality

    Bobbi: and yet also it’s subservient and facilitatory


    me: capitalism harnesses “love” for profit

    me: love is the discursive practice and unpaid labor is the effect

    me: but I mean, I get that, I’m anti love as such

    Bobbi: that’s vapid frances

    It’s meant to be funny, and it is, but it also gestures at an actual problem they see. Shouldn’t you give away your love and care for free? But doesn’t capitalism depend on and exploit that instinct? Bobbi and Frances don’t figure it out. Toward the end of Conversations With Friends, after a falling out, Frances emails Bobbi: “Is it possible we could develop an alternative model of loving each other?” The novel ends not long after.

  12. She has vetoed a specific publisher interested in publishing a Hebrew translation rather than the very concept of a Hebrew translation. This turns it into a Ben and Jerry-style ineffectual protest – it looks like a statement of virtue but is essentially meaningless

  13. Marianne and Connell, who spend four years alternately pursuing and withdrawing from each other.
    Coitus very-interruptus

  14. They should just publish her book in Hebrew, change the title of the book and use a fake name. How would she ever know?

  15. @ hallowed be
    Lipstick is make-up – also your post made me look at her face and she seems to have inexpertly applied eyebrow pencil.
    More a case of someone who wishes to *appear* superior to bourgeois cares about appearance by omitting rouge and mascara but carefully poses for the camera with less obvious make-up.

  16. Anon-I never intended to read any of her garbage. But the windbag review you posted ensures that her verbal ordure is an absolute non-starter.

  17. John77- yeah ok touché possibly not zero make-up, but more the no make-up look. My own thought was that with big, but vulnerable, egos you’d expect it to be slapped on with a trowel a la Barbara Cartland. Still, i stand by: its a bit dodgy to infer (with any hope of accuracy) her thoughts from a pic, albeit, its a fun thing to speculate on.

  18. I see the guardian called her work ‘hyperverbal’, well fancy that!

    ‘Critical acclaim’ TV shows never seen and ‘awards’ galore. I present to you a potemkin career of low value but trumpeted by the right sort in the guardianindependent axis.

    She looks like a miserable commie Irish cunt. And her poetry via Wikipedia is really bad!

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