Wednesday, February 22, 2006

The Observer has an interesting profile of New York Times Magazine writer Daphne Merkin (who, somewhat irritatingly, wrote about vaginal rejuvination surgery a couple of weeks ago as if she were the first to notice that it exists), that gets at some of the thorny issues of being a woman writer who wants to write about both Serious Issues and also more personal things:

Ms. Merkin’s productivity is remarkable at a time when many magazines look like all-male reviews, save for the random communiqué from a woman on blowjobs or work-life balance. One could argue that women are unfairly penalized for baring their souls or, on the other hand, hired solely for such soul-baring. But Ms. Merkin manages to write about W.G. Sebald and Henry Roth, all while disclosing her experience of getting plastic surgery and discoursing on her own bad taste in men.

...Once, women who wrote about women and feminine concerns were considered feminists. Now it seems that women writing about women are in danger of bringing down all of womanhood. If the very subject that a woman writes about suggests her level of seriousness—i.e., her feminist chops—sometimes this might not include the subject of self.

No comments: