Sunday, March 02, 2008

Is it the 1700s again?

At the Washington Post today, an opinion piece that makes me wonder about that very question.

Columnist Charlotte Allen says that:
  • Hillary Clinton's campaign has been undermined by "every stereotypical flaw of the female sex."
  • Women always fall for "the hysterical, the superficial and the gooily sentimental," citing historical literature and "Grey's Anatomy" to back up her claims.
  • Women get into more accidents! (Sure, the odds that men's accidents are fatal are 3 times as high, but so what?)
  • Men's brains are bigger! (I've seen the evidence that men have a higher distribution in terms of intelligence--i.e., there are more men on the very high and very low end--but that proves what, exactly?)
  • A made-up story about how women had to remember where berries were back when humans were hunter-gatherers! (That is supposed to prove something?)
The conclusion from the overwhelming evidence she has presented:
So I don't understand why more women don't relax, enjoy the innate abilities most of us possess (as well as the ones fewer of us possess) and revel in the things most important to life at which nearly all of us excel: tenderness toward children and men and the weak and the ability to make a house a home. (Even I, who inherited my interior-decorating skills from my Bronx Irish paternal grandmother, whose idea of upgrading the living-room sofa was to throw a blanket over it, can make a house a home.) Then we could shriek and swoon and gossip and read chick lit to our hearts' content and not mind the fact that way down deep, we are . . . kind of dim.
So, I guess my question is... well, I have 2 questions:
(1) WHAT?!?!?
(2) Is this some sort of satire? I don't think so, based on this opinion column from 2005 regarding the Larry Summers events at Harvard. Allen states that feminism is one of three 20th-century totalitarian ideologies (along with communism and Nazism). She then makes essentially the same argument as here.

Apparently, we're still a little behind the Victorian Age...

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