What Women Want

March 14, 2015

No kidding, these and only these two things came in the mail today:

Jailhouse Feminism(1)  Current issue of National Review.  Cover story: “Jailhouse Feminism: What the raging gets right”, Mary Eberstadt.  Excerpt:

Yet listening in on some of the conversation today suggests an explanation other than simple venality. Something else is up out there making female trash talk all the rage — something unexpected, poignant, and, at the same time, awful to behold. It’s the language of bondage and captivity, told by prisoners of the sexual revolution.

. . .

Feminism has become something very different from what it understands itself to be, and indeed from what its adversaries understand it to be. It is not a juggernaut of defiant liberationists successfully playing offense. It is instead a terribly deformed but profoundly felt protective reaction to the sexual revolution itself.

Interesting article.

The Taming of the Shrew(2)  The local Shakespeare company is putting on The Taming of the Shrew.

It’s intellectual theme day at the Postal Service!

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4 Responses to “What Women Want”

  1. Foxfier Says:

    About the only flaw I see in the first article is that it doesn’t suggest a perfectly good word– “cad.”

    “Liberated” women were supposed to be happy acting like cads; turns out, not so much. (Looking at some sailor friends who are hitting their mid-30s without a serious relationship yet, the cads aren’t very happy, either, it just takes a bit longer to realize it.)

    There isn’t cad shaming, either, but I don’t think “stud” is the same as “slut” in implications. Might be because I’d think either “brood mare” or “heifer/cow,” although possibly “bitch” or “dam.” (Not sure the last is accurate for cats; I know ‘queen’ is only if pregnant or nursing, but I can’t find another.)

    Sticks in my mind because I really pissed off a cousin’s wife when she was on a rant about how English is sexist because we didn’t have a male equivalent word, and I pointed out that we did, she just kept using “man-slut” instead.
    I didn’t intend the implication that she found the same behavior much worse when associated with a female term and thus any sexism was in her, but I now realize that she got poked with it, which explains the whole not-speaking-to-me thing. Well, besides making her look a little silly in the middle of a rant.

    Major digression:

    The illustration is really impressive, but one of those things that doesn’t go to thumb-nail very well– my husband was trying to figure out why National Review had an article with the standard “Women are upset because they lost their jobs after World War II” article, and it was only after I explained the on-a-stripper-pole, in-jail thing that I noticed she had Madonna cones. (I wonder what else I’m missing. A nose stud or something, probably.)

    • Foxfier Says:

      Obviously tired, that was a lot longer than I thought.


    • I don’t think I have as big a vocabulary for these words as you do, but I don’t think of “cad” as always implying promiscuity. Does it usually? So I guess I think the others sort of have a point about the language—“stud” implies promiscuity but doesn’t have negative connotations, “cad” does have negative connotations (though not nearly as strongly as “slut”, I don’t think) but doesn’t primarily imply promiscuity.

      But I probably wouldn’t know. My impressions of the term probably come from a pretty small number of exposures, possibly all in books I had to read in high school.

      Either way, as Well-spent Journey says, “I sympathize with the gender disparity. I really do. I personally try to be as judgmental as possible toward promiscuous men.”

      • Foxfier Says:

        “Slut” use to mean a low-class, personal hygiene lacking woman– I got a lot of exposure to it from Agatha Christie era novels; ‘cad’ was more strongly sexual than ‘slut,’ since it meant that he’d say anything to get a girl into bed and then run off. (The first time someone refereed to a nasty house-maid as a slut rather startled me!)

        Polite society wouldn’t talk about either, except so far as warning that a guy was likely to be a threat; that leaves the counter-culture for the source of which is more popular.

        I like the quote, but we’re not the ones they’re actually upset about … which wraps it back around to the point of the article, scared/hurt folks lash out.


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