Monday, March 13, 2017

Why I Am Not a Feminist: a Feminist Manifesto / Jessa Crispin, 151 pp.

A highly readable critique of contemporary feminism, which, for Crispin, has become fully intertwined with capitalism and a me-centered self-actualization movement.  (While reading I kept thinking of the full-page ad in the NYT on March 8 which consisted of a squishy aspirational pro-woman poem, with a Lululemon logo at the bottom. Hooray!  Women are great!  And buy our yoga pants.)

I enjoyed Ms. Crispin's direct style.  The reviews practically caution the reader that Crispin is wildly combative; I don't think the writing bears this out, maybe because I am older and grumpier than she is.  She warns against the Twitter-fueled emphasis on individual acts of misogyny rather than on attacking root exploitation and violence; her example is an important male academic whose errant comment (which may or may not have been taken out of context) cost him his career.  She is at pains to say that her concern is not with an individual man's fate but that such rage and quick 'satisfaction' consume a lot of energy and accomplish little except to make everyone afraid.
Great food for thought.  I look forward to reading more.

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