Tuesday, January 17, 2006

Is anyone else disturbed by the photos that go along with this review of the latest anti-feminist polemic Women Who Make the World Worse: And How Their Radical Feminist Assault Is Ruining Our Families, Military, Schools, and Sports? Betty Friedan looks like she has a headache, Jane Fonda's smile looks plastic and painful, and Gloria Steinem is falling asleep. Are these the faces of feminism? I think not. At this point, anyone who writes a book attacking these women is just lazy. And check out this side-by-side comparison of Ms. magazine's latest cover alongside an issue of Ladies Home Journal. The design similarity isn't the end of the world - it's just really really lame - but why the fuck is Jane Fonda on the cover of this magazine instead of about a million other more interesting and relevant women and men? It's not that there aren't other great zines and magazines out there, but to see Ms. still hanging out on the newsstand, looking so clueless, really makes me cringe.

Anyway, Ana Marie Cox (late of Wonkette, now a Times It Girl with the publication of her first novel) makes short work of debunking Kate O'Beirne's oh-so-inspired book:

[O'Beirne's] salvos against such dusty icons as Betty Friedan, Gloria Steinem, Jane Fonda and Catharine MacKinnon do all these women the enormous favor of making them relevant again. And, surely, anytime anyone recalls the deeds of Bella Abzug, an angel gets its wings.

It's always fun to call conservatives on their shit, but it also seems like a waste of energy and column inches. Patrica Cohen also tackles "choice feminism" in the Week in Review.

If you'd like to see the literary scandals of last week turned into a rather snotty, completely serious, yet still pretty interesting intellectual type essay that manages to compare James Frey's fictions to Holocaust deniers and the Bush administration (and who doesn't?), go see what everyone's favorite literary critic Michiko Kakutani has to say. And click here if you want to read Mary Karr's more insightful Op-Ed about the same situation. It's possible that I'm officially sick of this topic. Sick, yes, but still totally fascinated.


Anonymous said...

yes. i too am outraged.

Zen Wizard said...

The photos look like the "ambush style; let's catch this broad at her worst moment"-technique propogated by The National Enquirer, et al.