Comments on: Ditch the “women’s stories” and give us real women’s lives, please. http://www.historiann.com/2013/07/16/ditch-the-womens-stories-and-give-us-real-womens-lives-please/ History and sexual politics, 1492 to the present Thu, 18 Sep 2014 18:48:25 +0000 hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=3.9.2 By: All the single ladies, part ZOMGeleventy!!111!!! : Historiann : History and sexual politics, 1492 to the present http://www.historiann.com/2013/07/16/ditch-the-womens-stories-and-give-us-real-womens-lives-please/comment-page-1/#comment-1589006 Fri, 02 Aug 2013 20:26:30 +0000 http://www.historiann.com/?p=21541#comment-1589006 [...] post is about all of those “ZOMG college women having sexxay sexxxx with totally undeserving d00ds!!!! (and p.s. I’m bitter that I, the [...]

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By: Link love | Grumpy rumblings of the (formerly!) untenured http://www.historiann.com/2013/07/16/ditch-the-womens-stories-and-give-us-real-womens-lives-please/comment-page-1/#comment-1567155 Sat, 20 Jul 2013 07:49:48 +0000 http://www.historiann.com/?p=21541#comment-1567155 [...] you meet in stupid hookup culture articles.“  Ah media, why ya gotta be tools?  Historiann asks the question more broadly and points at a great Salon [...]

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By: Ellie http://www.historiann.com/2013/07/16/ditch-the-womens-stories-and-give-us-real-womens-lives-please/comment-page-1/#comment-1564831 Thu, 18 Jul 2013 13:24:56 +0000 http://www.historiann.com/?p=21541#comment-1564831 truffula, I think we are in agreement insofar as the macro message applies to all of “us ladies,” but I do think there is something particular about the obsession with *elite* women. Surely at least in part it’s NYT advertising demographics, but I think there is an ideological aspect, as well, that has to do with reassuring elite men that those women kicking their a$$es in the classroom aren’t really beating them in the world at large.

(I don’t know if I’m younger, but it’s hard to imagine being less crabby than anybody. I’ve certainly got a less poetic turn of phrase, however—loved the “bend to our purpose” line.)

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By: truffula http://www.historiann.com/2013/07/16/ditch-the-womens-stories-and-give-us-real-womens-lives-please/comment-page-1/#comment-1564103 Thu, 18 Jul 2013 00:27:45 +0000 http://www.historiann.com/?p=21541#comment-1564103 same coin

That’s why I wrote ” relevant only insofar as it bends us toward our purpose.” Psyops is always in the oppressive regime toolkit but I think it is in service to a greater purpose. Ellie may have stated it better than I did. (Perhaps she’s younger and less crabby than I am.)

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By: Ellie http://www.historiann.com/2013/07/16/ditch-the-womens-stories-and-give-us-real-womens-lives-please/comment-page-1/#comment-1563397 Wed, 17 Jul 2013 13:34:20 +0000 http://www.historiann.com/?p=21541#comment-1563397 Thanks for sharing this and the follow-up stories. I am always struck by the Ivy/elite college focus of so many of these anxiety-raising lifestyle pieces (pace that NYT article from a couple of years ago on Harvard and Yale grads becoming stay-at-home moms). Part of it is surely the point North makes about these being the women who are “worth worrying about.” But is it also about reassuring readers/reminding their subjects that these women students are still just women despite their achievements and privileges, that admitting women into the training grounds of the American oligarchy hasn’t really changed the structures of power in any meaningful way?

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By: Northern Barbarian http://www.historiann.com/2013/07/16/ditch-the-womens-stories-and-give-us-real-womens-lives-please/comment-page-1/#comment-1563385 Wed, 17 Jul 2013 13:20:21 +0000 http://www.historiann.com/?p=21541#comment-1563385 yes, I was going to say that these are two sides of the same coin: you should be receptacles and caregivers, and if you are not fitting that template, whether by deliberate choice or circumstance, you are in the wrong.

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By: Historiann http://www.historiann.com/2013/07/16/ditch-the-womens-stories-and-give-us-real-womens-lives-please/comment-page-1/#comment-1563365 Wed, 17 Jul 2013 13:03:20 +0000 http://www.historiann.com/?p=21541#comment-1563365 I don’t think those readings are exclusive. I agree with you, truffula, that “the point of these stories is to reinforce the popular understanding of women’s value to society, that is, as receptacles and caregivers.” But that’s instructive to girls and women too.

Both the “you’re doing it” and the “wrong” parts are important. That’s how the system ensures that women can never win: even if we “do” the uncompensated care work and buckle to convention, we can always be “wrong.”

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By: truffula http://www.historiann.com/2013/07/16/ditch-the-womens-stories-and-give-us-real-womens-lives-please/comment-page-1/#comment-1563115 Wed, 17 Jul 2013 10:12:54 +0000 http://www.historiann.com/?p=21541#comment-1563115 “But i guess the point of these essays is, as always, to make women uneasy and unsure how to be themselves.”

I disagree. I think the point of these stories is to reinforce the popular understanding of women’s value to society, that is, as receptacles and caregivers. How we ladies react to such stories is relevant only insofar as it bends us toward our purpose.

I would suggest that the “you’re doing it wrong” theme is more about the “you’re doing it” than about the “wrong.” Babies too early, babies too late, babies too many, babies too few: they all have one thing in common.

I’d add Christine de Pisan to Feminist Avatar’s list. The Book of the City of Ladies stands on its own but it is also a response to rampant 15th century misogyny.

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By: Feminist Avatar http://www.historiann.com/2013/07/16/ditch-the-womens-stories-and-give-us-real-womens-lives-please/comment-page-1/#comment-1562900 Wed, 17 Jul 2013 08:04:59 +0000 http://www.historiann.com/?p=21541#comment-1562900 What’s perhaps as depressing as these stories is the realisation that women have been writing similar responses for at least 300 years. Just think of Wollstonecraft’s exasperated response to Fordyce and Gregory, or Austen’s authoring of Northanger Abbey as a foil to Richardson’s Pamela. Women have literally been reading these tedious representations of femininity for generations and responding with intelligent critique. And, yet nothing changes.

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By: Historiann http://www.historiann.com/2013/07/16/ditch-the-womens-stories-and-give-us-real-womens-lives-please/comment-page-1/#comment-1562263 Wed, 17 Jul 2013 01:57:32 +0000 http://www.historiann.com/?p=21541#comment-1562263 “But i guess the point of these essays is, as always, to make women uneasy and unsure how to be themselves.”

Bingo!

We r doin’ it rong, again.

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