The Woman Who Told the Truth

The story of Cassandra, the woman who told the truth but was not believed, is not nearly as embedded in our culture as that of the Boy Who Cried Wolf—that is, the boy who was believed the first few times he told the same lie. Perhaps it should be.”

— Rebecca Solnit, “Cassandra Among the Creeps

The Quintessential Figure

Eve not only deserves punishment but becomes the quintessential figure of unruly, transgressive nature, a nature that neither woman nor man can altogether contain and both would prefer to repudiate.”

— Lisa Appignanesi, Introduction to The Madwoman in the Attic by Sandra M. Gilbert and Susan Gubar

This is a Pattern

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) Responds to Rep. Ted Yoho (R-FL)

“And so what I believe is that having a daughter does not make a man decent. Having a wife does not make a decent man. Treating people with dignity and respect makes a decent man, and when a decent man messes up as we all are bound to do, he tries his best and does apologize. Not to save face, not to win a vote. He apologizes genuinely to repair and acknowledge the harm done so that we can all move on.”

I have watched this video through dozens of times just in the past couple of days. As frustrated and infuriated as I am with what Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez had to go through I’m happy she was able to respond in this way.

She took her personal but not at all unique experience and brought it to the national stage in a way we can all identify with, internalize, and learn from. She is showing us all how to stand up and speak up, how to hold others accountable for dehumanizing language, and articulated perfectly the very real harm that this language inflicts on all of us.

I only hope Rep. Ted Yoho and men like him learned something too…

A Luxury and a Major Problem

[I]f the father works and the mother works, nobody is left to watch the kids. In societies where these families constitute the majority, either government acknowledges the situation and helps provide child care (as many European countries do) or child care becomes a luxury affordable for the affluent, and a major problem for everyone else.

— Ariel Levy, Lift And Separate

The Radicals

The radicals taking over feminism, many of whom were active in the civil-rights and antiwar movements, wanted to overthrow patriarchy, which would require transforming almost every aspect of society: child rearing, entertainment, housework, academics, romance, business, art, politics, sex.”

— Ariel Levy, Lift And Separate