Feminism: The Distraction of Waves


| 6/12/2009 1:26:22 PM


Tags: Media, media criticism, feminism, waves, sexual freedom, political awareness, Katha Polllitt, The Nation,

The Nation“Can we please stop talking about feminism as if it is mothers and daughters fighting about clothes?” Katha Pollitt writes in The Nation. “Second wave: you’re going out in that? Third wave: just drink your herbal tea and leave me alone!”

The wave structure tossed around in the media “looks historical,” Pollitt writes, when in reality it’s anything but. Second wavers (like Adrienne Rich and Gloria Steinem) are in their golden years; third wavers (known for staking a renewed claim on “girl culture” and their passion for the intersection of race, class, and gender) are approaching 40.

Yet third wave “continues to be used to describe each latest crop of feminists—loosely defined as any female with more political awareness than a Bratz doll—and to portray them in terms of their rejection of second wavers, who are supposedly starchy and censorious. Like moms. Somebody’s mom, anyway,” Pollitt writes.

Aside from being inaccurate, this wave narrative reduces feminism into a tired battle between sexual freedom and repression. “Why not acknowledge that there will never be a bright line between pleasure and danger, personal choice and social responsibility, open-minded and judgment?” Pollitt writes. “The fine points of sexual freedom will all be there waiting for us—after we get childcare, equal pay, retirement security, universal access to birth control and abortion, healthcare for all and men who do their share at home, after we achieve equal representation in government, are safe from sexual violence, and raise a generation of girls who don’t hate their bodies.”

Source: The Nation

annanamos
6/25/2009 1:57:27 PM

One wonders just what has become of feminism. The incredible strides taken in the 60s and 70s seem to be almost lost when the feminine icons of the times, at least for young women, are Britney Spears and Lindsey Lohan, although there are obviously others such as Oprah that are far more positive. However, it seems that at least a portion of the feminist movement has caved to commercial interests. How many products these days have a marketing strategy that is entirely driven by being sold to Mom? Granted, its a mild insult that hardly anything is marketed for Dads, but getting beyond the Mom vs. Dad, which one is more important argument, it seems that motherhood has been hijacked by advertisers. Well, it makes sense - women spend the bulk of the money, according to a lot of demographic studies, esp. the 16 - 30 age range. Remember minivans? That was a big one. The "family vehicle" - and then it became the biggest selling body style in the 80s and early 90s, when it then gave way to the SUV, which got essentially the same marketing campaign. Nothing is stopping the mom-centric marketing machine, and now there's mom-driven fashion lines such as Pro Mom Couture - although there's nothing couture about screen printed T Shirts, is there? A review of the website is at this address: http://personalmoneystore.com/moneyblog/2009/05/29/promom-couture-spend-money/ It really seems like the feminist movement has been hijacked, doesn't it?


annanamos
6/25/2009 1:52:36 PM

One wonders just what has become of feminism. The incredible strides taken in the 60s and 70s seem to be almost lost when the feminine icons of the times, at least for young women, are Britney Spears and Lindsey Lohan, although there are obviously others such as Oprah that are far more positive. However, it seems that at least a portion of the feminist movement has caved to commercial interests. How many products these days have a marketing strategy that is entirely driven by being sold to Mom? Granted, its a mild insult that hardly anything is marketed for Dads, but getting beyond the Mom vs. Dad, which one is more important argument, it seems that motherhood has been hijacked by advertisers. Well, it makes sense - women spend the bulk of the money, according to a lot of demographic studies, esp. the 16 - 30 age range. Remember minivans? That was a big one. The "family vehicle" - and then it became the biggest selling body style in the 80s and early 90s, when it then gave way to the SUV, which got essentially the same marketing campaign. Nothing is stopping the mom-centric marketing machine, and now there's mom-driven fashion lines such as Pro Mom Couture - although there's nothing couture about screen printed T Shirts, is there? A review of the website is at this address: http://personalmoneystore.com/moneyblog/2009/05/29/promom-couture-spend-money/ It really seems like the feminist movement has been hijacked, doesn't it?


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