Joan Didion Is A Classic Sagittarius

The writer Joan Didion is a classic example of the Sagittarius personality. You see it in her words, style, and even her packing list. She has Sun, Moon, and Venus in the sign. An amazingly prolific writer, she was a New Journalism pioneer. She fearlessly explored fragmented psyches before it was fashionable.

She was more recently a model for Celine, just a few years off her Uranus Return at age 84. Her Saturn Return evocation turned into a cult essay.   In classic Sagittarius style, she drove a Corvette Stingray and flew to Honolulu in lieu of divorce. Her packing list (below) was kept permanently glued to the wardrobe door.

Her thoughts on self-respect are also archetypal of the Sagittarius personality. Remember, this sign is – at base – on a quest for Truth & Autonomy.

“There is a common superstition that “self-respect” is a kind of charm against snakes, something that keeps those that have it locked in some unblighted Eden, out of strange beds, ambivalent conversations, and trouble in general.

It does not at all. It has nothing to do with the face of things, but concerns instead a separate peace, a private reconciliation.

To free us from the expectations of others, to give us back to ourselves – there lies the great, the singular power of self-respect.”

45 thoughts on “Joan Didion Is A Classic Sagittarius”

  1. Her Mercury at 29 Scorpio…be still my heart. She has that dry wit and analytical and depth psych precision that really cuts to the bone. If you’re a native Californian or have lived in the state for any length of time, I highly recommend her memoir Where I was From. It contains the history and culture of CA that is hardly ever spoken of. I remember loving how she described her ancestry and the pioneer women who first came to the state (yep, Kataka Sun here).

    1. My Aries Moon Kataka Sun fully agrees with this analysis. I want the sleek design, handling, and speed, but my goodness it also needs to built as much like a tank as possible.

  2. Ah! Yet another cooler-than-I-will-ever-be woman to be inspired by. Thank you Mystic for all of the amazing women you bring to my attention!

  3. Yes! Self-respect is all that. I feel it that way now. I have enough self-respect to muddle my way through weird encounters and fuck ups without ripping my heart out and forcing myself into a death march. It’s ok. Mistakes happen. I’m here. I’ll keep learning.

    After a vacation where I was relieved of my luggage for the duration, I know I can absolutely live for a short time with a list of items just like Joan’s.

  4. Love, love, love her and I love this. I lost all my self respect the last 2 years, just re-growing it and working out what it means for me. I should have known Didion would have something to say on the matter.

  5. I’m a big fan of Joan Didion. Great to see this post. thanks MM

    (I share her birthday – however am a child of the early 60s – and for better or worse I have Sagg in Sun, Mercury. Venus and Mars – lol).

    Here is link to my fave photo – from the same shoot as the one Mystic posted however she possesses a greater air of insouciance

  6. This almost literally looks like my written lists from other times. The almost being that other items were written in Piscean code including other languages, living and ancient.

    But they were ALL on the List.

    1. haha yes, Im sans bourbon and cigarettes now but the sentiment is still there. I love the idea of a permenant list for travel

  7. Who did Joan Didion divorce/abandon? I only know about her marriage to John Gregory Dunne, which ended with his death. They were very close – I don’t know of any period where she left him.

    1. “1969: I had better tell you where I am, and why. I am sitting in a high-ceilinged room in the Royal Hawaiian Hotel in Honolulu watching the long translucent curtains billowing in the trade wind and trying to put my life back together. My husband is here, and our daughter, age three. She is blonde and barefoot, a child of paradise in a frangipani lei, and she does not understand why she cannot go to the beach. She cannot go to the beach because there has been an earthquake in the Aleutians, 7.5 on the Richter scale, and a tidal wave is expected. In two or three minutes the wave, if there is one, will hit Midway Island, and we are awaiting word from Midway. My husband watches the television screen. I watch the curtains, and imagine the swell of the water.

      The bulletin, when it comes, is a distinct anticlimax: Midway reports no unusual wave action. My husband switches off the television set and stares out the window. I avoid his eyes, and brush the baby’s hair. In the absence of a natural disaster we are left again to our own uneasy devices. We are here on this island in the middle of the Pacific in lieu of filing for divorce.

      I tell you this not as aimless revelation but because I want you to know, as you read me, precisely who I am and where I am and what is on my mind. I want you to understand exactly what you are getting: you are getting a woman who for some time now has felt radically separated from most of the ideas that seem to interest other people. You are getting a woman who somewhere along the line misplaced whatever slight faith she had in the social contract, in the meliorative principle, in the whole grand pattern of human endeavor. Quite often during the past several years I have felt myself a sleepwalker, moving through the world unconscious of the moment’s high issues, oblivious to its data, alert only to the stuff of bad dreams, the children burning in the locked car in the supermarket parking lot, the bike boys stripping down stolen cars on the captive cripple’s ranch, the freeway sniper who feels “real bad” about picking off the family of five, the hustlers, the insane, the cunning Okie faces that turn up in military investigations, the sullen lurkers in doorways, the lost children, all the ignorant armies jostling in the night. Acquaintances read The New York Times, and try to tell me news of the world. I listen to call-in shows.”

      I think they stayed together <3

  8. I love this definition of self-respect.
    We – or at least I – always blame ourselves for the peeps we meet, but in the end is what you do when you find yourself around the Qi-Vamps and fuqers in general, that matters.

    1. So true, MissDee, I was fresh from making this same conclusion re: delayed recognition of a blatant User less than 5 minutes before finding this post and astonishingly enough turbo-sped through the funkiest of OMG, this again?! How f***ing DUMB do I have to be?? , finding myself in (very new to me) stainless steel, Let’s Clean This Shit OFF, assess-&-reset mode. F***ing THANK YOU, Aquarius Moon ?

  9. Mystic, I´m laughing! this is the best post right now you have no idea I am packing with a very similar list and aspirations. So nice to see a sag moon-venus doing it right, I need inspiration. I think I have a new muse. <3

    Isn´t it a moon sag thing to fly after breakups – I need space, like another country? I always forget to come back though

    If you swapped that corvette stingray with a mustang 67 or 68 and a black dress this is literally my dream life. I absolutely love that quote.

    1. Yes, and if you can;t afford to fly you’ll get on a bike to feel the wind in your hair and teeth. In between packing all the boxes to move.

      Like there’s no tomorrow.

      Or, no, like there’s ONLY tomorrow.

  10. Joan Didions 1961 Vogue article, ‘Self-respect: It’s source, it’s power’ is absolutely worth a read. Excellent article!

    1. The White Album was a kind of bible for me this year. Not in an instructional sense but something about her tone and approach to subject matter.

  11. great writer, great quotes and great post – love this take on self-respect, drawing from one’s own internal ‘compass’ not an external social one.

  12. As they used to say about Beyonce: YAAASSS QUEEN.

    Speaking as another multi-Sag, ambivalent and strange beds, conversations and trouble are pretty much a given, sometimes simultaneously…

  13. Lux Interior Is My Co-Pilot

    Fuq I needed this right now.

    The cap moon (and Venus, Pluto, Merc) has brought me all sorts of status anxiety and self doubt.

    This is brilliant.

    I agree with her. Having it doesn’t make all the schizz go away, but it does make it easier to deal with.

    1. I love this too and needed it desperately. I am so buoyed up by reading it I might be able to sleep properly tonight for the first time in days….

  14. Mmmmmm yesss I feel it so hard. Been feeling it so much. It is so good.

    I deem it self esteem; we’re talking about the same thing. I also call it the sacred silence and that in me which is not only me and which may be in everything yet is surely in me and can always be accessed and my doubts put to rest thereby. It lives in my navel region.

    I wonder what her second house looks like, and how it looked by transit when she wrote that… I think of this inner resourcefulness as a 2nd house thing.

          1. Sagg asc. I LOATHE bras. So constricting and unnecessary. I think they’re a waste of money and a waste of physical effort (both to put on and take off).

            I’m still not candid enough to float about with cold nips though…. I stick with cotton bralettes in neutral colors. No more than two at a time. Easy.

        1. It’s true…I’m Sag asc and we hate foundation garments unless they are super stretchy and comfy…and maybe then….but they can’t impede any of our movements.

    1. That’s funny – I would vote Sag Sun women “Least likely to wear a bra” period! That, and anyone I know with a fair kick of this sign prominent tends to be a nudist at heart – they seem to love being au natural as much as possible. Personally, IDK how they do it – this is a Fire sign that tends to be really active and I don’t think I could handle my tits bouncing around while on a run. Then there is the matter of the whole high-beam issue created by going sans brassiere….

      Besides, I’m a Venus/Pluto girl who loves my lingerie! 😉

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *