Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Feminism in Prospect, pt. 3

Along with the previously mentioned present and future failings of feminism (discussed here and here), it is a safe bet that modern feminism will continue to do harm in two additional areas well into the future.

3) Women will be more unhappy.

Much has been said elsewhere about the general level of unhappiness and insecurity among females presently. Whether it is anxiety about dealing with their own
levels of "success"
(as reported in the New York Times way back in 1986), increased binge drinking by female college students, a greater need for "emotional support animals" to help women deal with stress associated with airplane flight among other things (also reported in the NYT), increased out of wedlock births leading to women's "immiseration" or National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health data indicating greater rates of job-related anxiety, stress and neurotic disorders among females, today's generations of women seem to have stressors that go well beyond what their mothers and grandmothers had to deal with.

Much of this new anxiety and unhappiness may be related to the dramatic changes in family structure and operation occasioned by the feminist movement. It appears that as families have strayed further from the model of a male breadwinner and female homemaker, the general dissatisfaction of both partners has increased. In his book, "Rewriting the Sexual Contract," author Geoff Dench discusses findings derived from the National Child Development Study (NCDS), a UK-based longitudinal study using periodic follow-up interviews to track the lives of a cohort of children born during one week in 1958. At the time of Dench's writing, the NCDS contacted study participants and their partners to gather their perceptions of the quality of their relationships. While the report was subject to a fairly broad range of interpretations, there was one factor that seemed fairly consistent.

What [the data] do show, quite unambiguously, is that those respondents recording the highest levels of general satisfaction with life were those living in "traditional" households. The pattern of responses on this is remarkably consistent. The highest levels of happiness, and lowest levels of unhappiness, among both men and women, are found in households where the wife is a housewife and the husband the sole earner. Similarly, the lowest levels of happiness, and highest levels of unhappiness, for men and women, are found in role reversal households where the wife works and the husband stays at home. Those with some type of "dual career" pattern, or no earner, came in between. (Emphasis in original.)
To be sure, this phenomenon is not seen only "across the pond." A much-discussed NYT article dealt with the trend of women - from elite colleges, no less - chucking their Ivy League credentials all to pursue their aspiration of becoming homemakers. It appears that women who have the wherewithal and education to support themselves quite nicely are opting to return to more "conventional" family systems, even as some of them may not have seen such a family structure modeled in their families of origin.

4) Society will be worse off.

Considering the foregoing, the idea that feminism will make every component of society worse would seem to be a foregone conclusion. But beyond feminism's negative effects on individual men, women and children, feminism had mostly negative effects on the core institutions of society. By attempting to erase gender-related differences between men and women, confusion abounds over gender-specific roles and duties in society at large. Even as modern feminism sought to give women (and men) more choices, people have no idea what to choose, as they do not quite know what it means to be a man or a woman. Feminism also created unreasonable and unfulfillable expectations for both sexes. Understandably, this has lead to increased inter-sex anger and bitterness

Perhaps the most powerful critique of feminism (and its most virulent hazard for the future) is that it is, in the end, yet another form of liberalism. Feminism, like every strain of liberalism, has sought - as conservative blogger Jim Kalb describes it on his Anti-Feminist Page - to create "a new kind of human being in a new form of society." Jim goes on further to note:

The objections to anarchist and communist theory apply with yet more force to feminism, because what the latter seeks to eliminate touches us far more deeply than private property or the state. Like the other two theories, feminism can be presented as a lofty and necessary ideal set up in opposition to a long history of dreadful injustice. After all, things like gender that are implicated in all social life are necessarily implicated in all social injustice. Nonetheless, the practical implementation of feminism, especially by force of law, can only lead to catastrophe. Like anarchism it calls for categorical opposition to distinctions and patterns of authority people find natural, and like communism for ceaseless radical reconstruction of all aspects of life, and consequently for absolute bureaucratic control of everything. Both tendencies are thoroughly destructive, and their mutual opposition does not render them harmless.

The result of the victory of feminism has been a combination of disorder and state tyranny cascading from America throughout the world, from the most immediate personal relationships to high culture and international politics. Feminism has meant suspicion and hostility where mutual reliance is an absolute necessity. It has meant growing deceit, heartlessness and brutality in daily life, resulting in particular suffering for the weak. It has meant confusion and misery for the young, who have been deprived of stable family life and concrete ideals of adulthood. It has meant the destruction of local and popular institutions by ever more powerful and irresponsible state bureaucracies. It has set women free mainly to be low level employees and unattached sexual commodities. It must therefore be opposed as a destructive fanaticism based on a gross and wilful misapprehension of human life.

Enough said, and well said indeed!

1 comment:

MikeeUSA said...

I made a new cartoon on feminism at .What do you think?