Gender Studies; waffles

Good morning!  I’m working on an actual post for my actual blog; I really am!  It’s just too long still, but I’m hoping to carve it down to something palatable.

In the mean time, here’s my post for the Register today: “Gender Studies.”  I’m all nervous because I’m afraid people are going to think I’m saying that all women should be barefoot and pregnant and making waffles all the time, and all men should be swaggering brutes who ride off to war, or at least the coal mines.

That is, of course, not what I mean (although, waffles . . .).  It’s more about my frustration that women (women especially, although men, too) are constantly told to quash their normal instincts and strive for something else.  They’re told that they want what they want because they’ve been brainwashed — when really they want what they want because they’re women.

Hope to see you there!  There will be waffles!*

image source

*Not really.

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18 comments

  1. They’re told that they want what they want because they’ve been brainwashed — when really they want what they want because they’re women.

    I have never heard it said so well!

  2. It’s a tricky thing, because I don’t mean to say that girls who don’t play with dolls aren’t real girls, and women who don’t want to be stay-at-home moms aren’t real women. Obviously there are many variations on a theme. But the last several decades have, obviously, overcorrected grossly. My mother, for instance, tells me that, having kids in the 60’s, she breastfed them because she couldn’t help feeling like it was the right thing to do — but she was embarrassed about it, since everyone was telling her that science had something better to offer.

  3. And also “And it’s okay to want that!” The messages women receive today are mind-boggling!!!

    Congresswomen Millicent Fenwick spoke at my brothers college commencement in 1982. After telling everyone, women included to go and conquer the world yadda yadda, she also added something along the lines of, “And women, if you want to stay home and raise a family, don’t let anyone tell you that isn’t worthwhile of that it is waste of your education.”

    I was 16 and her words had a big impact. I don’t think today’s young women are getting that message from the feminists, political leaders or society.

    What a shame.

    • Right on. Supposedly the feminist movement was about giving women choices; but, as I commented on the Register, a woman who publicly speaks about the value of motherhood is raked over the coals for setting women’s rights back. So stupid.

    • In all of the commencement addresses (and there were MANY) at my daughter’s May graduation from a Catholic girls’ high school, including that of the principal (SSJ religious), NONE of speakers mentioned anything about motherhood. I was so sad, not only for myself, but for the 100+ other mothers sitting in that auditorium being dismissed or at least diminished.

  4. I recently borrowed a book from the library called “How to Be a Domestic Goddess: Baking and the Art of Comfort Cooking” by a woman named Nigella Lawson. Lawson, it seems, is quite famous in foodie circles. The recipes in her book have all been delicious (note: the savory onion pie is to. die. for.), but the subtext in her writing set my teeth on edge. She fell over herself making sure that her female readers didn’t, in any way, suspect that women in the kitchen was something to be considered “normal”. Instead, cooking was an amusing pastime for the liberated woman, unfettered by any of the gender roles of the past.

    To read someone whose career revolves around cooking verge on sounding slavishly apologetic to her fellow women for enjoying something as demeaning as food preparation made me scream.

    I have a Masters Degree in Education. I am a moderately intelligent, passably articulate person. I have reaped the benefits of a feminism that strove to make the law and the culture realize that women were made in the image and likeness of God just as much as men were.

    The feminism that then went beyond that goal and tried to strip me of the very autonomy that was so hard earned by telling me that I should not, could not find meaning and fulfillment in being a wife, raising a family, and running a house is something that I have no use for.

    And waffles are delicious.

    • First, Nigella’s recipes ARE wonderful.
      Second, don’t be bothered with her Weltanschauung; she belongs to high British society, and such folks never did what normal people do on everyday basis (cooking, cleaning …) … except because something is “amusing pastime”.

      I always liked cooking, and already in my teen years I cooked pretty well. When I went to university. my friends told me not to mention cooking, because “it’s something unappropriate for young intelectual, it makes you look provincial and oldfashioned, even stupid”. Well, I had the best marks and generally was very selfconfident so I didn’t care. But some girls were beaming with proud because they didn’t cook.
      But look! 10 years after that, cooking is in fashion, everyone cooks, everyone’s talking about food, cooking show is mandatory for every decent tv channel.

      Morality: Do not model your behaviour on the contemporary world :-))

      • Weltanschauung- wow. Thank you, Anima for introducing a fabulous new word into my vocabulary.

        Totally, wildly off the subject, but since you’re the only source I’ve ever come across to use this word, so you are now my official expert on it, when would the use of “Weltanschauung” be preferable to, say, “philosophy” or “world view”?

        I understand that some words, like the equally fantastic “schadendreude” are unique, and would take more words to unpack than just using the original. Is this the case for Weltanschauung? If so, how?

        Thank you,
        The Language Geek

        • World view, yes … with slightly ironic flavour :-)).
          As you said, some words are so unique (think of Gestalt, Angst or Lumpenproletariat, for example). a little bit of German is worth remembering :-)).

          Sorry if I offended you, I didn’t want to show off. Till 1918 my country was a part of Habsburg Monarchy so we use a lot of germanisms.

  5. Thanks so much for your thoughts about womanly things and food! I love this whole article! And the comments…

    Ebay for waffle irons that make *crispy* waffles….as long as you grease them well!

  6. Simcha, I believe that the sexes have different predispositions to their respective gender roles, but do you think that gender could moreso be something to be instilled by parents and then striven for by people just like virtues? Women striving for femininity and men for masculinity?

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