As someone who spent six years writing under a pen name, the topic of anonymity is fascinating to me. When I started blogging as Belle de Jour it was for practical self-protection - I didn't want to risk my career in science by people knowing I was also a call girl.
While we may not know their names, anonymous writers have long shaped our worldview, says Brooke Magnanti, who wrote as sex blogger Belle de Jour.
Belle de Jour is as close as I've seen BuÃ±uel get to a character study. In a subtle way he seems to empathize with Severine and make her self-inflicted emotional confinement come across with the same urgency as she experiences it, so regardless of our personal views on prostitution we have no doubt that she is doing what she deems appropriate to save herself (in this case BuÃ±uel tries to 'explain' Severine with some flashbacks from her childhood)... It is an unusual subject, but an important one nevertheless: it isn't rare that our biggest limitations should come from within ourselves.