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Thread: How feminism has hurt women.

  1. #1
    Gold Member Delphinium's Avatar
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    Unhappy How feminism has hurt women.

    excerpt from an article by Wendy L. Walsh

    But make no bones about it, feminism did not liberate femininity. In fact, I think it did the opposite. It pushed femininity in the closet, turning feminine traits into embarrassingly weak elements of our personality -- a side that we began to show to fewer and fewer people. Remember the chick you once broke down in tears in the office? How embarrassing, you thought. You vowed then, to never, ever act like a “girl” at work, right? By the way, I was that girl and made an even stronger vow that day. I swore that no one would ever see me as weak again. And, so I trashed my authentic self -- the girl who used to be vulnerable, honest, and aware of my feelings -- and I even began to distrust my own intuition. Intuition, a primal gift to women, now somehow seemed illogical in the workplace. And, maybe everywhere else.
    Finally, feminism did a disservice to many women who weren’t (and aren’t) unhappy with traditional gender roles. Feminism robbed them of their identities by devaluing their job description. Millions of women whose self esteem was derived from their role as a great mother or supportive wife were suddenly left with a low-ranking title. There are still many women, (indeed, the backbone of our country) who cringe at a cocktail party when that inevitable small-talk query pops up, “And, what do you do?”
    Somehow it seems awkward to say, “I take pride in my soufflé, kiss plenty of boo boos, find joy in my garden, and I spend a lot of time helping my family with their emotional struggles.” No, instead, the woman who does those very things everyday is forced, in public, to extol the merits of the part-time office job that brings her income and not much more. And, if you think that a married woman who is in touch with her femininity is a pariah in public, imagine a single woman who is developing hers: “Well, I read a lot of parenting and self-help books. I’m currently dating and hoping to encourage emotional intimacy in a man so that we can form a warm union and grow together.” That statement just wouldn’t fly, would it? Yet, I think this is what many of us are secreting hoping for. We Threw the Baby out with the Bath Water.

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    Gold Member Elise's Avatar
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    Default Re: How feminism has hurt women.

    Oh please. What bullshit. I plan on staying home & raising my children when I get married, but I like that I have the option of being in the workforce. Feminism has given women tons of options & we are free to take whichever one we want.
    A loving person lives in a loving world. A hostile person lives in a hostile world. Everyone you meet is your mirror. -Ken Keyes Jr.

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    Elite Member Lobelia's Avatar
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    Default Re: How feminism has hurt women.

    Well, for one thing, crying in the workplace is inappropriate. Why is it ok for women to cry? Can't you just cry at home without "trashing your authentic self?"

    The article makes an assumption that all stay at home wives & moms are shamed by people. I don't believe that's true at all.

    “Well, I read a lot of parenting and self-help books. I’m currently dating and hoping to encourage emotional intimacy in a man so that we can form a warm union and grow together.” That statement just wouldn’t fly, would it?
    That's ridiculous. It most certainly would fly. Who would have a problem with that statement? Who would CARE if someone made that statement?

    The article doesn't make a compelling case.
    "I've cautiously embraced jeggings"
    Emma Peel aka Pacific Breeze aka Wilde1 aka gogodancer aka maribou

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    Gold Member Elise's Avatar
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    ^^& what single woman actually does that???? It does sound kind of sad & pathetic to me. I don't remember the last time I read a self-help book.
    A loving person lives in a loving world. A hostile person lives in a hostile world. Everyone you meet is your mirror. -Ken Keyes Jr.

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    Gold Member Delphinium's Avatar
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    Default Re: How feminism has hurt women.

    An interesting snippit exposing what "feminists" in their white ivory towers really think about the average woman who wants to stay home and raise her own children.

    This view of the woman at home as some poor slave "reduced to servitude" and "a mere instrument for the production of children" is echoed over and over again in the writings of feminists who are now enshrined as patron saints of the women's movement. Let's allow them to speak for themselves:


    "[The] housewife is a nobody, and [housework] is a dead-end job. It may actually have a deteriorating effect on her mind...rendering her incapable of prolonged concentration on any single task. [She] comes to seem dumb as well as dull. [b]eing a housewife makes women sick." ~ Sociologist Jessie Bernard in The Future of Marriage, 1982.

    "Housewives [are] an endless array of 'horse-leech's' daughters, crying Give! Give! -- [a] parasite mate devouring even when she should most feed [and who has] the aspirations of an affectionate guinea pig." ~ Charlotte Perkins Gilman, Women and Economics: A Study of the Economic Relations Between Men and Women as a Factor in Social Evolution, 1898.

    "A parasite sucking out the living strength of another organism...the [housewife's] labor does not even tend toward the creation of anything durable.... [W]oman's work within the home [is] not directly useful to society, produces nothing. [The housewife] is subordinate, secondary, parasitic. It is for their common welfare that the situation must be altered by prohibiting marriage as a 'career' for woman." ~ Simone de Beauvoir, The Second Sex, 1949.

    "[Housewives] are mindless and thing-hungry...not people. [Housework] is peculiarly suited to the capacities of feeble-minded girls. [It] arrests their development at an infantile level, short of personal identity with an inevitably weak core of self.... [Housewives] are in as much danger as the millions who walked to their own death in the concentration camps. [The] conditions which destroyed the human identity of so many prisoners were not the torture and brutality, but conditions similar to those which destroy the identity of the American housewife." ~ Betty Friedan, The Feminine Mystique, 1963.

    "[Housewives] are dependent creatures who are still children...parasites." ~ Gloria Steinem, "What It Would Be Like If Women Win," Time, August 31, 1970.

    "[The husband's work] provides for greater challenges and opportunities for growth than are available to his wife, [whose] horizons are inevitably limited by her relegation to domestic duties. [This] programs her for mediocrity and dulls her brain.... [Motherhood] can only be a temporary detour." ~ Nena O'Neill and George O'Neill, Open Marriage: A New Lifestyle for Couples, 1972.

    "Women owe Frieden an incalculable debt for The Feminine Mystique.... Domesticity was not a satisfactory story of an intelligent woman's life." ~ Elizabeth Fox-Genovese, Feminism Is Not the Story of My Life, 1996.

    "Being a housewife is an illegitimate profession... The choice to serve and be protected and plan towards being a family-maker is a choice that shouldn't be. The heart of radical feminism is to change that." ~ Vivian Gornick, University of Illinois, "The Daily Illini," April 25, 1981.

    "[As long as the woman] is the primary caretaker of childhood, she is prevented from being a free human being." ~ Kate Millett, Sexual Politics, 1969.

    "[A]s long as the family and the myth of the family and the myth of maternity and the maternal instinct are not destroyed, women will still be oppressed.... No woman should be authorized to stay at home and raise her children. Society should be totally different. Women should not have that choice, precisely because if there is such a choice, too many women will make that one. It is a way of forcing women in a certain direction." ~ Simone de Beauvoir, "Sex, Society, and the Female Dilemma," Saturday Review, June 14, 1975.

    "Feminism was profoundly opposed to traditional conceptions of how families should be organized, [since] the very existence of full-time homemakers was incompatible with the women's movement.... [i]f even 10 percent of American women remain full-time homemakers, this will reinforce traditional views of what women ought to do and encourage other women to become full-time homemakers at least while their children are very young.... If women disproportionately take time off from their careers to have children, or if they work less hard than men at their careers while their children are young, this will put them at a competitive disadvantage vis-a-vis men, particularly men whose wives do all the homemaking and child care.... This means that no matter how any individual feminist might feel about child care and housework, the movement as a whole had reasons to discourage full-time homemaking." ~ Jane J. Mansbridge, Why We Lost the ERA, 1986.
    All of this would be bad enough by itself, but the feminist movement of the 1960s and 1970s did not stop at verbal attacks against wives, homemakers, and mothers. They pushed relentlessly to change laws which both protected wives and mothers and which encouraged men to provide for their own families. They did not rest until they had triumphed through the elimination of the "family wage," the reduction of tax benefits for single-earner households, and the passage of "no-fault" divorce laws. Sociologist Jessie Bernard (quoted above), remarked that the "very deprivation of assured support as long as they live may be one of the best things that could happen to women" (The Future of Marriage, 1982). In other words, if men can walk away from marriage easily, leaving women with no support, women will be forced to take up careers whether or not they desire to do so.
    Quote Originally Posted by Elise
    Oh please. What bullshit. I plan on staying home & raising my children when I get married, but I like that I have the option of being in the workforce. Feminism has given women tons of options & we are free to take whichever one we want.
    if you are ever lucky enough to have a man marry you. Most men prefer not to "buy the cow" as they get the milk for free. Many unfortunate women who buy into feminist dogma end up old, bitter and alone. (and no I'm not saying you are a cow just using a well-known metaphore).

    BUT if you do get married ponder this...

    "A primary factor contributing to the feminization of poverty has been the change to a system of no-fault divorce under which divorce is easily obtained, even when opposed by one of the parties, and men are often able to terminate marriages without providing adequate alimony or child support. The feminist quest for female fungibility with males has led the women's movement to support the invalidation of laws benefiting and protecting women. This was the thrust, for example, of litigation directed by Ruth Bader Ginsburg when she was director of the Women's Rights Project of the American Civil Liberties Union and, often using male plaintiffs, secured invalidation of laws that favored women. The theory was that obliteration of all legal sex distinctions would ultimately be in the best interests of working women; those women, including homemakers, who wished to retain the benefits of protective legislation were never the women with whose rights the Project was concerned" (p. 295).

    "[F]eminists nevertheless often try to disclaim responsibility for no-fault's results. Liberationists of the 1970s blathered mindlessly about the oppressiveness of the family, exhorting women to break the chains of their confinement, to cease being parasites in their suburban havens, to cease holding husbands in marriages the men no longer wanted, and to set out on the road to true fulfillment and equality by finding some rewarding career. Yet, having been taken seriously by every state legislature in the country and with the divorce revolution accomplished, feminists seek to absolve themselves of blame, as if society should have known better than to listen to them. No longer concentrating on the oppressiveness of the home and family for women, feminists argue instead that, unfortunately, married mothers must remain in the work force to protect themselves from the very likely possibility of becoming single parents by divorce. This is a likelihood, they choose not to remember, their movement was highly instrumental in creating" (Domestic Tranquility, p. 296).

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    Elite Member Grimmlok's Avatar
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    Default Re: How feminism has hurt women.

    And many women who turn their back on feminism end up placing all of their self worth on what a MAN thinks of them.

    Again, you've ceded control of yourself to men.

    That's pathetic. You need a man to be happy?

    *laughs at you*

    Wake up and be your own person, and not some idiot doormat.
    I am from the American CIA and I have a radio in my head. I am going to kill you.

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    Gold Member Delphinium's Avatar
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    Default Re: How feminism has hurt women.

    Brian Robertson, in his book Forced Labor: What's Wrong with Balancing Work and Family (Spence Publishing, 2002), notes, "Here it is that the fallacy of 'neutrality' in the tax system and providing women with a 'free choice about taking jobs' is laid bare. If government decides that it will no longer [through tax deductions] defray the cost entailed for families raising children, this does not so much allow mothers more freedom of choice in the matter of work as it compels them to seek paid employment outside the home to supplement insufficient family income" (p. 128). The feminists cannot have it both ways. They cannot with one hand sweep away the very protections that have guarded wives, mothers, widows, and orphans for centuries while at the same time insisting verbally that they are not against women making the choice to stay at home instead of getting into the career track. The "choice" to remain at home has now become a financially painful one for many families. But women hurt by the "advances" of feminism are told to sit down and shut their mouths, because, without feminism, we'd (supposedly) go back to some kind of Dark Age where husbands chain women to the house and treat their wives like parasitic slaves and sexual objects.
    Christopher Lasch has noted that, if the feminist movement was truly fair to all women and open-minded about the choices they make, it would not seek to marginalize wives and mothers: "A feminist movement that respected the achievements of women in the past would not disparage housework, motherhood or unpaid civic and neighborly services. It would not make a paycheck the only symbol of accomplishment.... It would insist that people need self-respecting honorable callings, not glamorous careers that carry high salaries but take them away from their families" (quoted in Forced Labor, p. 33).

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    Elite Member Grimmlok's Avatar
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    Default Re: How feminism has hurt women.

    Yeah, its tougher now. That's another result of CHOICE. You need to make hard ones.

    You want everything handed to you on a silver platter?

    Gawd, it's like listening to someone from the 1890's
    I am from the American CIA and I have a radio in my head. I am going to kill you.

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    Elite Member Lobelia's Avatar
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    Default Re: How feminism has hurt women.

    Damn, I know several middle-aged women who placed all their proverbial eggs into their husband's basket, and by death or divorce, got left to fend for themselves. Thank goodness they were able to get decent jobs, because there was a time when you were SOL if Mr. Banker didn't need a secretary.
    "I've cautiously embraced jeggings"
    Emma Peel aka Pacific Breeze aka Wilde1 aka gogodancer aka maribou

    Yip, yip, yip in your tiny indignation. Bark furiously on, lady dog.

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    Elite Member moomies's Avatar
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    Default Re: How feminism has hurt women.

    You know there are many different schools of thought within feminism? What JungleMonkey quoted above is Radical Feminism. It's like bashing all the Christians for what Fundies do.

    Radical Feminism: This is the school of thought mainstream society typically equates to genderal feminism. Radical feminists believe that the biggest oppression working in our society is based on gender. Some believe a married woman can't be a feminist, or that straight women can't be feminist, all-in-all it comes down to the arguement that any dependance on men will equal the oppression of women. Although not all radical feminists are lesbians, this is the school of thought that has influenced a all of lesbian separatist groups.
    http://www.answerbag.com/q_view.php/32642

    If you think it's crazy, you ain't seen a thing. Just wait until we're goin down in flames.

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    Elite Member Grimmlok's Avatar
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    Default Re: How feminism has hurt women.

    WOW, they're able to hold jobs instead of starving on the street or living in shelters?

    THANK YOU FEMINISM.

    *tosses that in junglemonkey's face*

    That's what progress is. If you had your way, those women would have been destitute.

    Way to go.

    What's with all the gender loathing?
    I am from the American CIA and I have a radio in my head. I am going to kill you.

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    Elite Member Lobelia's Avatar
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    Default Re: How feminism has hurt women.

    Yep, the only thing that held them back was their lack of education & job training. They didn't get GREAT jobs, mind you, but they got jobs that, back in the day, were only held by men.
    "I've cautiously embraced jeggings"
    Emma Peel aka Pacific Breeze aka Wilde1 aka gogodancer aka maribou

    Yip, yip, yip in your tiny indignation. Bark furiously on, lady dog.

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    Elite Member Grimmlok's Avatar
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    Default Re: How feminism has hurt women.

    *slaps face in mock surprise*

    Well.. in junglemonkey's world, that would never have happened. I wonder what she'd feel like if she were in their place?

    Would she still be sticking with this "feminism bad!" motif?
    I am from the American CIA and I have a radio in my head. I am going to kill you.

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    Elite Member moomies's Avatar
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    Default Re: How feminism has hurt women.

    I'm starting to get a weird Trolli vibe from this. All we need is some talk about abstinence and eugenics.

    If you think it's crazy, you ain't seen a thing. Just wait until we're goin down in flames.

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    Elite Member Lobelia's Avatar
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    Default Re: How feminism has hurt women.

    My great-grandmother was abandoned by her husband. She raised 3 girls by scrubbing floors at night. Her options were pretty limited. Plus, she was totally scorned for having "lost" her husband. This was back before feminism was rampant, obviously.

    Things were generally not good for women UNLESS they had a decent husband who provided well. I guess anybody who didn't have that was deficient.
    "I've cautiously embraced jeggings"
    Emma Peel aka Pacific Breeze aka Wilde1 aka gogodancer aka maribou

    Yip, yip, yip in your tiny indignation. Bark furiously on, lady dog.

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