Hefner and Marilyn

Two articles on the news item that Hugh Hefner has bought the funeral plot, and means to be buried, next to Marilyn Monroe. See here and here.

I am reminded of something I read: Joe DiMaggio, out of Marilyn’s various husbands and lovers, the man whose baby she miscarried (or perhaps aborted to extend her career) faithfully carried flowers to her grave, and her other paramours never took the time or made this gesture.

Tangentially, this article also reminded me of the puzzlement I have always felt toward the proposition that the Sexual Revolution was a friend to Feminism. Free Love is always presented in terms of Women’s Liberation, but I submit the two are antithetical.

Removing the sacredness from marriage, the honors paid to motherhood, the courtly behavior expected from suitors, the expectation that brothers and fathers would protect their womenfolk from cads, bounders, and mashers, the normalization of adultery: none of them are the proper business of Women’s Liberation, as all these things rob liberty from women.

What the suffragettes wanted was the vote, ownership of property, the normalization of women in business and trade.  In other words, an ability for a woman to move about in the free market without an escort or a protector: equality.

What the Sexual Liberation movement wanted was removal of the social barriers, the protective wall, around potential sex objects, most importantly the wall called marriage, which forbad sexual coupling for light or transient reasons, but allowed it only for couples where the man had made a public and irrevocable vow and commitment to love, honor and cherish, forsaking all others, his beloved–in other words, to match his deeds to his words, and to see through any logical and natural results of the sexual reproductive act, including if the reproduction act led to (as it is want to do) reproduction.

In economic metaphor, what the Sexual Liberation movement wanted was a lowering of the transaction costs, and a way for the man to escape the burdens and consequences of reproduction. If the women fell in love with him, but he was bored with her, or if the woman had a child he did not care if lived or died, the society’s new rules would allow him to walk away without public shame, and therefore would allow him to maneuver the woman into being his demimondaine without public disapproval. 

The whole point of the Sexual Revolution was to permit men to seduce, exploit and abandon women without the woman having any support or recourse. It was a trick, like telling the princess you mean to kidnap that her bodyguards are her jailors, to get her to order them away.

The advantage to the men is clear, particularly young and thoughtless men. I am not sure what the women get out of it, except a sharp reduction in status, and an ability to indulge in meaningless sex that (in the strict economic sense of the term) cheapens their worth. If the relationship goes sour, the women bear all the costs. Again, in terms of an economic metaphor, this is like the easy credit policy of the pre-Depression days: the rational investor takes irrational risks when someone else underwrites the risk, merely because he can afford to. If you lower the transaction costs, the public commitment, for relationships, you get more men willing to seduce you without any commitment on his part.  

Instead of being able to move freely through the free market, when the social barriers are removed, women have fewer places they can go, not more, without being exposed to the aggression of male sexual predators. If adultery is a norm, married women must fend off unwelcome suitors with the same wariness and care that a maiden must. In the workplace, if it no longer socially unacceptable to court without courtliness, then awkward (and easily misused) sexual harassment laws must be brought in to take the place of what had been dismissed—namely, the old social mores. As if we drove all the umpires off the field in a ball game, and replaced them with policemen in riot gear. The sought-after equality is gone, because the inequality is now enshrined as a matter of law, namely, sexual harassment law.

If women could compete equally with men in affairs of business, there would be no need of such laws: but the masculine psychology (which is as predatory and lusty as it was in the days when Achilles and Agamemnon quarreled over who should possess the slave-girl Chrysies) makes civilized behavior with women impossible: until and unless the rules and customs of civilization, the boundaries and sanctuaries evolved over centuries, are allow to check the reckless impulses. Removing those boundaries in the name of liberation is counter-productive. Throwing down a prison wall does indeed liberate the prisoners, but throwing down the wall of a fortress merely exposes you to the Huns.

Ladies, take it from a guy who has been a guy almost all his life: guys are Huns. But if we can be cowed into submission by any force, rational or irrational, Church or Custom or Peer Pressure, then the wedding ring becomes a magic ring, which forms a Ward not even the Great God Cupid tempts us across, a boundary to restrict our loyalties to our oaths, or to repel, as from the freezing glance of Diana, any of the peeping lusts of Actaeon. Laws will not substitute. The machinery of lawyers and juries much slower than the immediate sense of shame a man carries with him, and enforces himself on himself.  

The final blow dispelling any illusion that Feminism was friendly to women was struck when the National Organization of Women came out in public support of President Clinton’s adultery. Now, by any normal standard, an affair of this kind betrays the wife and exploits the mistress. In the case of a powerful and lusty man, who has enormous powers at his beck and call to intimidate witnesses and blacken the names of his accusers, not to mention get the IRS and the Secret Service to harass people, the Harassment Law will be no threat. One would think this is the very sort of man, a ruthless exploiter of women, that all women would band together to denounce, restrain, and shame. Instead, the ladies of the NOW serviced Bill Clinton much in the same way as Miss Lewinsky did.

Feminism at this point had finally and clearly departed from seeking equality for women, or protecting them from abuse at the hands of men, and declared allegiance to the exploiters, abusers, pornographers and panderers, and other men of the type who want to use women merely as a convenient hankie to squirt their semen in, and then discard.

The Ancient Greek Sexual Harassment Law: Have him torn to bits by his own dogs!
The image “http://www.bluffton.edu/~sullivanm/brookgreen/actaeon.jpg” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

About John C Wright

John C. Wright is a practicing philosopher, a retired attorney, newspaperman, and newspaper editor, and a published author of science fiction. Once a Houyhnhnm, he was expelled from the august ranks of purely rational beings when he fell in love; but retains an honorary title.
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46 Responses to Hefner and Marilyn

  1. kalquessa says:

    Oh goodness, I need an icon of dogs tearing at a deer with “Ancient Greek Sexual harassment Law” on it. *makes note for the weekend*

  2. elliot_h says:

    Mr. Wright, based on what you’ve written above I think you would really enjoy these three essays:

    Read Mercer Schuhardt’s attack on “The Cultural Victory of Hugh Hefner” – http://www.godspy.com/issues/The-Cultural-Victory-of-Hugh-Hefner.cfm

    Frederica Mathewes-Green on “Three Bad Ideas for Women” – http://www.frederica.com/writings/three-bad-ideas-for-women.html

    Naomi Wolf on “The Porn Myth” – http://nymag.com/nymetro/news/trends/n_9437/

    • admin says:

      When Alan Moore announced that he was publishing a book of pornographic cartoons, complete with child porn, beastiality, etc. starring Wendy Darling, Dorothy Gale, and Alice Liddle, his lapdog interviewer raised the only possible objection to pornography, even of the most utterly degrading sort, viable to the Left: that it provokes or encourages rape.

      Absent a threat of rape, in their minds, there was no possible objection, not even the shadow of an objection. But, had it been shown that porn causes rape, let us say, the way political tracts cause revolutions, then the old Leftist Big Brother impulse would have appeared full-blown, and free press rights, otherwise legitimate, would have been supressed on the grounds of a remote harm possible to third parties. Do you see the legal reasoning involved? It is similar to banning ads for cigarettes, except, in this case, the porn can be (by leftist lights, legitimately) supressed once it shows that porn leads to crime, but not because it degrades and coarsens the public weal. Cops shows, I suppose, could be censored for similar reasons, or Robin Hood cartoons, or anything that glorified crime.

      • elliot_h says:

        Naomi Wolf’s argument in the article I linked to above is an interesting one: she says that rather than encouraging male rapacity, porn reduces the male libido for actual women of flesh and blood. Real women can’t compete with the tastes porn cultivates.

        R. Mercer Schuhardt and Mathewes-Green argue much as you did in your post.

        • admin says:

          Here is a quote I like from the Schuhardt article;

          “So when Hefner says, “The major beneficiary of the sexual revolution is women, not men,” you’re completely right to be scratching your head in confusion. Porn culture demands of women precisely what real women don’t need or want: skinny bodies, huge fake breasts, no babies, and men who are unwilling to commit to anything more than a quick shag. In a Vanity Fair cover story last March, Hefner exclaimed, “But here’s the surprise—this is what they want.” If this is really what they want, then why would the playboy.com FAQ state that the average Playmate’s fourth highest ambition is “having a family”?”

          I note also that the article points out Hefner’s imposture as an intellectual–a frivilous and stupid man pretending to be serious and smart.

          I have unfortunately seen this as part and parcel of the Left, the New Religion of Modernism, too often.

          There are some bright Leftists, to be sure, clever with words, comfortable with bloodless abtractions, just as there are some stupid Christians: but the distribution is not even, since the central conceit of the Intellectual Elite is that they get to pretend they are smarter than the rest of us, without having to do the work of actually thinking any new thoughts. All they need do is adopt a set of pre-defined poses. In economic terms, this is a lost-cost high-yield investment.

          Christianity has no such appeal. We are supposed to be the simple people, the salt of the Earth, humble and not boastful: so even when someone with a grossly inferior education, who cannot even quote Aristotle in Greek, or Cicero in Latin, assaults us in debate, modesty prevents we display our credentials.

          In economic terms, this is a high-cost low-yield investment, if your purpose in life is to get kudos for smarts you do not possess.

          That they are more intelligent than we are (even though we remember the past and they do not) is an article of faith in the new religion, unquestioned and unquestionable.

          Not every person vain about his intellect necessarily becomes a Leftist, but there is an incentive, a reward present, which should tempt the marginal case, and so I would not expect the distribution of intellectual vanity Left-to-Right to be as even as purely random results would obtain.

          Certainly you can see it in Hugh Hefner: his method of making American into a Porn culture was to pose as a Gentleman of Leisure, a sophisticate.

          • xander25 says:

            “So when Hefner says, “The major beneficiary of the sexual revolution is women, not men,” you’re completely right to be scratching your head in confusion. Porn culture demands of women precisely what real women don’t need or want: skinny bodies, huge fake breasts, no babies, and men who are unwilling to commit to anything more than a quick shag. In a Vanity Fair cover story last March, Hefner exclaimed, “But here’s the surprise—this is what they want.” If this is really what they want, then why would the playboy.com FAQ state that the average Playmate’s fourth highest ambition is “having a family”?”

            The porn culture’s conception of women is the exact opposite of the Stoic’s.

            “Chapter. LXII.

            When women are grown up to fourteen, they begin to be courted and caressed; then they think, that the recommending themselves to the affections of the men is the only business they have to attend to, and so presently fall to tricking, and dressing, and practicing all the little engaging arts peculiar to their sex: in these they place all their hopes, as they do all their happiness in the success of them. But it is fit they should be given to understand, that there are other attractives much more powerful than these; that the respect we pay them, is not due to their beauty, so much as to their modesty, and innocence, and unaffected virtue.”

            http://geocities.com/stoicvoice/journal/0402/sc0402b1.htm

        • jordan179 says:

          Naomi Wolf’s argument in the article I linked to above is an interesting one: she says that rather than encouraging male rapacity, porn reduces the male libido for actual women of flesh and blood. Real women can’t compete with the tastes porn cultivates.

          People whose view of real women is formed by porn — and these, of course, are usually rather naive dirty-minded young men — can have very strange concepts of how women think. I would say off-hand that any education in the mechanics of sex provided by pornography is more than countered by the false information regarding female psychology.

          It also creates strange sexual expectations for the same reason that someone whose concept of infantry combat comes from John Wayne and Sylvester Stallone is going to have problems grasping real infantry tactics. Porn is staged — a single fifteen-minute scene can take several hours to shoot — and the very best takes spliced together in editing. No one can really have sex the way porn stars do, because even the porn stars don’t really have sex that way.

          Porn sex also tends to be loveless and joyless. None of the characters in most porno movies have any real relationships with each other (not even strong likings, really) and in most porno movies the act is mechanical, done without affection or good humor.

          Even if I could have the purely physical perfection of the act as done in a porno movie, I wouldn’t want it if it meant that I had to give up the love and caring and joy and fun of making love to a real woman.

          Sadly, people whose first concept of human sexuality comes from porn often have a hard time grasping this point.

      • jordan179 says:

        When Alan Moore announced that he was publishing a book of pornographic cartoons, complete with child porn, beastiality, etc. starring Wendy Darling, Dorothy Gale, and Alice Liddle, his lapdog interviewer raised the only possible objection to pornography, even of the most utterly degrading sort, viable to the Left: that it provokes or encourages rape.

        By the way, this must be especially offensive to Alice’s current kin. After all, though the adventures Dodgson described her in were imaginary, she was based a real child, Dodgson’s friend (*). One other famous person related to her was Basil Liddell-Hart, the British tank warfare pioneer.

        - Jordan

        (*) I notice that smarmy types make a big fuss over the possibly sexual implications of Dodgson’s photographic interest in Alice, but don’t seem to mind someone NOT her friend doing REAL porn (as opposed to innocent artistic nudes) about her …

  3. notebuyer says:

    When I was somewhat younger, I would bring it up to feminists by referring to “that old war between the sexes stuff — you know, the time before men won decisively.” You’d be amazed at the number of times I got a bemused look rather than a rebuttal.

  4. sabbrielle says:

    To play devil’s advocate, some women want (or think they want) the ability to have casual sex freely without shame imposed on them.

    • admin says:

      Sure. Some women want to be pregnant and have the father leave them. The question is not whether the desire exists, but whether it is in accord with natural reason, prudence, and moral logic. To will an act is to will its consequences and context; to regard the cost and benefit and assent that the cost is worth it. In this case, the Playboy bunnies in the FAQ’s list having a family, raising children, as among their top five goals in life. Logic asks whether the movement to which they have devoted their time, effort, and craft is supportive of that goal or contrary?

      • jordan179 says:

        One of Hefner’s bits of marketing genius is the personal information he gives about the girls. The intent, almost always, is to make them likeable as well as sexy, so that they’re not just images of naked bodies. The implicit fantasy in most cases is “she’s a beautiful and nice girl, and she’s willing for you.”

        Of course, past a certain age, a man hopefully meets a nice girl who he finds beautiful who really wants him, as opposed to merely having a fantasy …

    • starshipcat says:

      A strong component of the Sexual Revolution was a rebellion against the old double standard that was so strong in the 1950′s. And there was a seamy underbelly to the double standard: namely, the freedom of boys to “sow their wild oats” was dependent upon the creation and maintenence of a despised outgroup of “bad girls.” Unfortunately, not all the “bad girls” got categorized as a result of sexual failings; more than a few of them got dumped with that label on account of factors like poverty, race or orphanhood. And all of them were regarded as disposable, as people who didn’t matter.

      The big mistake was in assuming that people were dealing with a situation in which the in-group was unjustly withholding something legitimate from the out-group, parallel to the way that, frex, African Americans were being politically and economically disenfranchised. Instead, they were dealing with a destructive culture of privelege in which the priveleges themselves are toxic.

      It’s not just the problem of the in-group exploiting the out-group and then projecting their guilt onto the out-group, using various stereotypes to characterize the out-group as deserving exploitation. It’s not just eating meat while despising the butcher as “unclean.” It’s a system of excusing the in-group’s misbehavior by blaming it on the out-group. Trying to extend the priveleges to the previously excluded out-group just spreads the toxicity around. The only way to solve the problem is to elimitate the toxic priveleges themselves and the mentality of hypocricy they breed.

      The solution to the double standard isn’t to insist that women should have the same freedom to misbehave that men do. The only way to fight the double standard and get rid of its seamy underside of women rendered dishonored and thus disposable is to stop giving a free pass to male misbehavior. Stop winking at boys who sleep around, treating it as “just sowing their wild oats” or even treating them as admirable sexual athletes, studs. Make it clear that a young man who sleeps around before marriage can’t be trusted to remain faithful within it, and is thus a less desirable marriage partner, no matter how much money he has, no matter how smooth he talks, etc. Make real social penalties for male misbehavior, commesurate to the penalties for female misbehavior, instead of pretending that male misbehavior doesn’t matter as long as it’s done with women that have been marked off as not mattering.

      • admin says:

        Allow me to draw your attention to a post by Fabio Barbieri, where he characterizes the two political parties in America as tension between a conservative ‘in group’ and a revolutionary ‘out group’. Your dscription reminds me of his: the sexual revolution being an attempt by the have-nots to possess the sexual license of the ‘haves’. See here: http://fpb.livejournal.com/217554.html#cutid1

        Would you agree with me that Hugh Hefner was one of the main masterminds behind popularizing the idea that properly brought up middle class white boys ought to sow their wild oats? It simply was not always the norm. In the movie GALLIPOLI, when the young soldiers are on leave, and go out on the town to find whores, one boy objects, and, wide-eyed with surprise, asks his mates: “But what will you tell your wives?” The idea that men, even young men on the eve of battle, should be chaste had strong roots even until quite recently.

        Even when my mother was young, people in her community did not play cards, go to movies, or go to dances. There was no exception made for young men, and no one was shifting blame onto poor people, black or white: my mother’s folks were poor themselves, and scraped through the Depression only by being a tightly-knit group, good neighbors to each other. In those days, scandal held severe consequences, because man deprived of his neighbor’s help in hard times might not make it.

        • starshipcat says:

          I do know that my mother talks about how when she was going to college in the late 1950′s, the women had hours but the men did not (“hours” meaning a time by which they had to sign in at their dorm and remain in the dorm until morning), and that one of the university officials openly said that they were making sure that none of the women students got “in trouble,” (the euphemism when “pregnant” was considered too vulgar to be heard outside an OB/GYN office) with the not-so-subtle implication that the administration didn’t care what the men did so long as they didn’t get any respectable young women “in trouble.” So the double standard was certainly present in the 1950′s.

          The 1930′s were a complex period — there was the element of reaction against the excesses of the Roaring Twenties, but there was also the fact that people in economically straitened circumstances simply don’t have the resources to get into as much trouble as the affluent. Frivolous pleasure-seeking wasn’t just a sin in the abstract; it was a squandering of precious time, energy and money that was needed for daily survival. The virtues of the Depression were still present as the country entered WWII, but as victory became more certain, there was a strong element of “honored in the breach” to those virtues. Why else would the Army have to place Paris and certain districts in other cities off-limits to servicemen? Certainly, by the time the post-War affluence began to pick up, there was a definite gap between ideals and actual practice, which the upheavals of the 1960′s were able to play upon.

          • jordan179 says:

            Women are and always have been judged more strictly than men in terms of sexual morality because, in our species, it is the woman who both bears and primarily rears the children. This means that there is a potential “cast the seed widely” strategy easily accessible to men but not women — a woman can only bear one child at a time and has the same cost in raising them no matter how many lovers she takes.

            The female equivalent of being a playboy is being a prostitute — in the sense that a woman who has many lovers who are willing and able to contribute to the support of her offspring can thus benefit from her promiscuity. But there is one big difference between the male and female versions of the strategy, which makes the female version by far the less attracative choice.

            The male playboy strategy does not require a continued relationship between the man and the women he impregnates. He can literally run away from the obligation of child support. In fact, he doesn’t have to make any committment in terms of resources save for a small amount of time — an attractive man can easily find some women willing to have sex with him with no strings attached.

            By contrast, the female prostitute strategy, if it is to be effective, requires either a long-term relationship or a direct financial payment. Both have drawbacks. If the woman hopes to have her lovers support her children, she must find lovers who are both willing to have sex with her and support her: this is uncommon. Even if she can find this, she and her children are vulnerable to the violent jealousies of her lovers.

            Otherwise she must be what we more normally think of as a “prostitute” and operate on a cash-for-sex basis.

            Unfortunately, by doing that she is exposing herself to the worst aspects of male human nature. Even where prostitution is legal and thus prostitutes less vulnerable to exploitation by violent pimps, prostitutes are at considerable danger from their clients.

            In putting it in these sociobiological terms I am not pretending that morality is unreal nor lauding the sexual double standard — I am trying to explain why it is that the double standard has evolved and tends to persist.

            I agree with you that it would have been better for us to have elevated rather than depressed the morality of both sexes in an attempt to equalize them.

            • admin says:

              Single Standard; Double Prudence

              Let us not fall into the habit of adopting an incorrect terminology, merely because it is commonplace.

              When we hear of different rules, for example, governing the curfew hours of male and female student dorms at school, we should not call this a ‘double standard.’

              A double standard is one where the rules applied to one group apply in reverse to the other: when a man steals another man’s goods, he’s a pirate and hanged, but when a king steals another king’s possessions, he’s a hero, and given parades—that is a double standard.

              Having stricter curfew for schoolgirls is not a double standard at all, but prudence. The standard is the same for male and female students in 1950: chastity was the norm, and fornication was scandal. But the risks of violating the norm differ, then and now, between the sexes. Young men do not get seduced*, do not get raped, and do not get pregnant.

              It is not a double standard to pack eggs with more padding than billiard balls. The rule is the same: we want no breakage. The precautions differ.

              If you were the Dean of the college, how many schoolgirls would you need to show up to class unwed and pregnant on your watch, and how many outraged parents and alumni would you have to meet, before you made a rule to limit the access of predatory males to your nubile young charges?

              Many fathers send their daughters to school to get an education, not to get pregnant; the modern expediency, which is to kill the grandchild in the womb, does not give much comfort to fathers whose daughters are abused by the cruelties of the modern system, this Playboy philosophy.

              JCW

              *footnote: I mean boys do not get seduced in the legal sense of the term. At Common Law, ‘Wrongful Seduction’ was a Tort. “(1) enticement, persuasion, or solicitation of some nature, or a promise of marriage; (2) chastity of the female at the time of the alleged seduction; and (3) sexual intercourse as a result of the enticement.” 70 Am. Jur. 2d Seduction § 50 (1987)

              • starshipcat says:

                Re: Single Standard; Double Prudence

                However, the usage is so widespread that it has become the understood term, and to try to argue that it’s technically incorrect will be met with impatience and irritation, much like the reaction an astrophysicist would meet in trying to replace “sunrise” and “sunset” with terms that more accurately reflect the fact that the observed phenomenon is caused not by any solar movement, but by the rotation of the Earth. So, for the sake of communication, let’s just agree that “double standard” has become the idiomatic usage in Mainstream American English and use it accordingly.

                I’m less interested in the terms being used than in the corrosive effects of the system. And in fact, the period from the Depression to the 1950′s in which the general attitude of society was that sexual activity outside of marriage was scandalous for men as well as women is historically quite unusual. The usual situation across human history and societies has been that male sexual peccadellos have been at minimum winked at, and sometimes even lauded, so long as they pursue their peccadellos with those women who have been marked off as “bad girls” and thus effectively available for all, disposable. And even in the 1950′s, there was a growing tendency for male sexual purity to be honored more in the breach, so long as the appearances were maintained, leading to hypocracy and cynicism.

                And that whole system of toxic privelege has nasty effects that distort every relationship into which gender difference enters. Far more effort goes into distinguishing between “good girls” and “bad girls” than into actually penalizing male misbehavior and reducing its overall incidence. Winking at male sexual misbehavior so long as it stays out of sight and is done with “bad girls” only fuels the tendency to regard all women not as persons, not as ends unto themselves, but as the objects of agreements between men and thus as means to male ends.

                And worse, it creates a perverse incentive to maintain the size of the pool of “bad girls” available as outlets for male misbehavior, even if it involves unjustly ruining innocent young women’s reputations through smear tactics or outright slander. When I was in high school, some of my classmates started spreading rumors that I was one of the biggest sluts in the school. In truth I was a virgin not because of any noble resistance of temptation, but because I had about as much opportunity to commit that particular sin as I did to embezzle enormous sums of money, or to launch an unjust war of conquest against peacable nations. As it turned out, I was unwanted not only as a “good girl” to court, but as a “bad girl” to be had at will, so the vicious rumors never became anything more than a spate of petty social cruelty. But for a more desirable young woman who didn’t already have the desexualizing label of “brain” providing an ironic form of protection, such a spate of rumors could have led to her being redefined as a “bad girl” even when in fact she still was a virgin, simply because it’s impossible to prove a negative.

                • admin says:

                  Re: Single Standard; Double Prudence

                  If by double standard you mean the men are lauded and women cursed for the same act, you are using the phrase in its normal and understood meaning. The example you used did not fall under that heading: different curfews imposed because schoolgirls face risks schoolboys do not is simply not a double standard.

                  I am not of the opinion that this double standard is usual, at least, in Christian nations where prostitution, polygamy and concubinage is outlawed. Among the rich and powerful, yes, perhaps, or among soldiers on campaign or sailors on leave–but these are not the norm.

                  What do you make of ancient legal codes that proscribe death for adulterers as well as adultresses? Do you just assume these law were never taken seriously, or that they did not reflect the prevailing opinion? But if they did not reflect the prevailing opinion, how were they written or maintained as laws?

                  • starshipcat says:

                    Re: Single Standard; Double Prudence

                    However, at least in the usages *I* have heard, different rules for males and females are generally referred to as a double standard. However, I’m a historian, not a linguist, so I don’t know how widespread this useage is, or whether it might reflect only the usage of the ignorant, not the educated.

                    But I do find it interesting that such rules are one of the few exceptions to the general pattern that when people are to be protected from the risk of someone else’s wrongdoing, it is the potential culprit’s freedom of movement and association that is restricted, rather than the potential victim’s.

                    Re. the question about ancient law codes, such codes often reflect ideals of what society expects. Without a statistically significant sample of actual court cases to examine, it’s hard to say how closely actual executions reflected that ideal.

                    Frex, we have the case of the woman caught in adultery who was brought to Jesus, in contravention of the Old Testament law which clearly stated that both man and woman be punished. Commentators are fairly confident that this discrepancy was at least one of the points on which the scribes and Pharisees were hoping to trip Jesus up. However, we have no idea whether this sort of a lapse, in which the woman was caught and punished but the man was allowed to escape, was an aberation or a common miscarriage of justice. We just don’t have the data that allows us to go from anecdotal evidence to a statement about frequency.

                • jordan179 says:

                  Re: Single Standard; Double Prudence

                  And in fact, the period from the Depression to the 1950′s in which the general attitude of society was that sexual activity outside of marriage was scandalous for men as well as women is historically quite unusual.

                  The reason why men were being held to a standard closer to that women were being held to in the 1930′s – 1950′s was that, simultaneously, the standard to which women were being held to was dropping while the power of women in society was increasing (thus, they were in a position to hold men to a higher standard).

                  By the way, historically the English-speaking world in general, and America in particular, have been places where women have enjoyed relatively higher social status than was the case in Europe, and much higher status than was the case in most non-Western societies. Quite a lot of travellers commented on this regarding England as early as the Late Middle Ages (15th century).

                  And worse, it creates a perverse incentive to maintain the size of the pool of “bad girls” available as outlets for male misbehavior, even if it involves unjustly ruining innocent young women’s reputations through smear tactics or outright slander.

                  Agreed.

                  I’d point out that, today, the size of the pool of supposedly “bad girls” has now, in the eyes of many men, grown to include the whole female population. Note the premise in the hip-hop culture that all women are “bitches” and “ho’s” (the last piece of slang, by the way, being a contraction of “whores”).

                  • starshipcat says:

                    Re: Single Standard; Double Prudence

                    Actually, the most significant drop in the expectations for women occured at the close of the Victoran Era/Gilded Age, when it actually became possible for a woman to act independently in the public arena without losing her respectability. The famous muckraking women reporters of American Progressive Era would have been unthinkable even a decade earlier. In fact, I would argue that the expectations for upper and upper-middle class Victorian/Gilded Age women were almost inhumanly high, and the Edwardian/Progressive Era brought them back down to a place where women could be human beings instead of living dolls on stands. However much putting someone on a pedestal may ennoble them, it also dehumanizes them.

                    The longer this discussion continues, the more I wish I had the wherewithal to do a proper historical study of these phenomena, as far back as useful data is available. I’m wondering how closely our perceptions of previous eras’ attitudes and practice corresponds with actual fact. I do remember reading a scholarly study of the jurisprudence of rape from Puritan times to the present, which was truly fascinating, if rather creepy. I think it was titled Against Her Will, but I don’t remember the subtitle or the author, and all my notes are currently buried in the back of a storage locker. But I do remember the part about the development of the notion of a special feminine sexual will, distinct from the ordinary everyday will, which erased the matter-of-fact Puritan attitude toward the crime and its punishment, and brought into play a whole bunch of stereotypes that made it exponentially harder for a woman to prove that she had indeed been raped.

                    And yes, I’m disgusted by the phenomenon of men regarding all women as fair game for sexual predation. But I don’t want getting rid of it to have to mean erasing all the social and economic gains women have made. I just hope there’s some way to find a path clear to a healthy, balanced society where no one is treated as means to others’ ends.

                    • jordan179 says:

                      Re: Single Standard; Double Prudence

                      Actually, the most significant drop in the expectations for women occured at the close of the Victoran Era/Gilded Age, when it actually became possible for a woman to act independently in the public arena without losing her respectability.

                      This was to some extent, I believe, the product of a generation or two of effective policing in the larger cities. A hundred years earlier, around 1800, an unescorted woman was in very serious danger of being assaulted simply because of the incredible spottiness of law enforcement. The complex code of politeness that prevailed in Regency England (then one of the two or three most advanced cultures on the planet) was necessary to ensure that respectable women weren’t victimized.

                      The 19th century was civilizing in a number of ways, and one of them was increased respect for ordinary women. This had to happen, I believe, before women could enjoy greater freedom — under the 18th century code of conduct, a woman was not really safe unless she had influential male relatives or a lot of money of her own to hire protectors. By 1900, however, society deeply despised those who victimized a woman simply because she was friendless (*).

                      And yes, I’m disgusted by the phenomenon of men regarding all women as fair game for sexual predation. But I don’t want getting rid of it to have to mean erasing all the social and economic gains women have made.

                      I agree with you.

                      I like living in a society in which women can be free and independent.

                      - Jordan

                      (*) Not that it still didn’t happen. There was a thriving white-slave trade. It was just forced to shrink into the shadows, rather than act openly.

                    • starshipcat says:

                      Re: Single Standard; Double Prudence

                      Interesting, the connection between effective policing and the expansion of the freedoms a woman could enjoy and still remain a respectable woman.

                      There seems to be a general pattern that, whenever people cannot rely upon the state to provide protection on an impersonal basis, and the weak must seek the protection of the strong on an individual basis, that protection always comes at the price of personal subjection and loss of freedoms. I could make parallels with the feudal era and the manorial system, which developed in response to the failure of the Roman Empire’s military and political power, and how it gave way to more modern relationships between people as effective centralized authority re-emerged at the beginning of the modern era, replacing the protection of the local landlord with the protection of the centralized state.

                    • jordan179 says:

                      Re: Single Standard; Double Prudence

                      Interesting, the connection between effective policing and the expansion of the freedoms a woman could enjoy and still remain a respectable woman.

                      This is also the source of one of the most obvious areas of cognitive dissonance between feminism and much of the rest of the Left. The Left tends to be hostile to the police; but women (generally speaking) need the police more than do men because women are on the average smaller and weaker than men, and also more likely to be raped.

                      To some extent, feminists resolve this issue by ignoring it, and becoming irrelevant to any but upper-class women (who live in milieus where they are unlikely to be attacked by career criminals). To some extent, feminists stage “Take Back the Night” sort of marches, which are essentially displays but sometimes also involve coordinating citizen-watch patrols with the police.

  5. jordan179 says:

    If the relationship goes sour, the women bear all the costs.

    And that’s the inconvenient fact that all attempts to argue that the male and female attitudes toward casual sex can be equal bump into and sink against. Women get pregnant, men don’t.

    It can be argued, of course, that (1) women can take precautions against getting pregnant, and that (2) women who have been sterilized, (3) are already pregnant, or (4) are post-menopausal can’t get pregnant either. But the first and second conditions require effort on the part of the woman — they are not the “default” conditions; the third means that she’s pregnant anyway, and the fourth only applies to older women.

    The natural state of young to middle-aged women is fertility. And this means that the natural state of any normal “feminine” psychology is to be choosier about who she has sex with than the man is about who he has sex with. From this comes the difference in interests that every hetrosexual love story, to some extent, must touch on unless it is one in which the two main characters are in perfect harmony of intent from the beginning.

    Note: I’m not saying that men can’t be choosy, even to the point of strict monogamy; or that women can’t be unchoosy, even to the point of total promiscuity. That would be to deny obvious reality.

    What I’m saying is that the bell-curve of the male average is a little more towards promiscuity than the female average is. The precise distance between the two medians is open to debate. The existence of some distance is, I think, an established fact.

    Which supports your point.

    • admin says:

      Let me take it one step further: from the fact that women get pregnant and men don’t and from the fact that children raised by couples prosper more than children abandoned by fathers, it becomes a matter of prudence, a moral principle, that NO MATTER WHAT the man’s or the woman’s emotions, desires, preferences, or personality quirks, we OUGHT TO have women gravely concerned with establishing long-term vows of fidelity (marriage) with men before the sex act, so that emotions in harmony with the context and outcome of the act (such as childrearing) are encouraged.

      Even if men were perfect devils, prudence says we ought to learn to imitate, and perhaps some day learn to be, loving fathers and (ergo) faithful husbands and (ergo) honorable suitors rather than seducers, even if our every instict cried out the opposite.

    • starshipcat says:

      Men may not get pregnant, but men do get STD’s.

      And carry them home to infect their faithful, monogamous wives and pass them on to their children.

      If you want to see the consequences of the destructive culture of male sexual privelege that assumes that male sexual misbehavior is consequence-free, take a look at the spread of AIDS in Africa. It’s almost entirely heterosexual, and largely fuelled by the cultural assumption that a man has a right to have a faithful, monogamous “good girl” wife at home, but to still go out and have casual sex with “bad girls.”

      If we’re lucky, maybe the AIDS epidemic will have put enough of an evolutionary load on male promiscuity that we’ll see a shift toward more monogamous males. And hopefully a healthier society, without the toxic priveleges of the double standard and the hypocricy they breed.

      • jordan179 says:

        Men may not get pregnant, but men do get STD’s.

        And carry them home to infect their faithful, monogamous wives and pass them on to their children.

        This is a specific case of a more general principle behind why one should be careful over with whom one has sex.

        When one has sex with someone, one is opening oneself up to them in more ways than the obvious one. One is (normally) either taking that person to one’s own home or going to their home — in the first case, the other person now knows where one lives; in the second case, one is putting oneself into the other person’s environment, at that person’s mercy, and subject to whatever threats may be there.

        Lovers may be violent, or have violent associates, or have serious criminal baggage. Lovers may have diseases — not merely the so-called “sexually transmissible diseases,” but any contagious diseases (remember, kissing and exchange of intimate bodily fluids is a great way to catch any contagious disease).

        People tend to tell lovers their secrets. Lovers may be cruel or untrustworthy. One is vulnerable to verbal abuse, blackmail, and humiliation from the misuse of these secrets.

        I suppose one could theoretically live one’s life with all sorts of safeguards — always let others know where you go, retain private investigators or bodyguards to deal with possible criminal acts, never take lovers home or go to their homes, don’t share any secrets –

        but then, if you did all that, what would be the point in making love to someone? The only reason it’s better than masturbation is because it’s another human being, and if you close off all human contact and treat your lover like a potential threat, it would be at best a pleasurable gymnastic exercise.

        Hardly worth the trouble :)

        • starshipcat says:

          You can also get to the point where you’re so hyper-cautious that it becomes impossible to even initiate a relationship, and thus you end up miserable and isolated by fear.

          I was raised with the rubric that one should find potential dates via mutual acquaintences — but never realized that it assumed one already had a circle of friends to work from. Then I moved to a new city for a job, where I had no friends. My co-workers were nice people, but they were definitely colleagues, and our relationship was not condusive to even asking for introductions to potential dates. It would have violated the understood boundaries in the workplace to have done so. Thus I ended up spending my entire time in that city stuck at zero friends, unable to find any mechanism to make the first friend who would introduce me to other friends. The hopeless lonliness and resultant depression was a major part of why that job ended unhappily, blotting my employment record in a way I’ve never completely recovered from.

          • jordan179 says:

            That sucks.

            I get the impression that, at that time in your life, you were a bit socially awkward and shy so that it wasn’t easy for you to make friends in general, and having to deal with a corporate (or urban) culture that assumed that if you approached a man the intent was blatantly sexual and hence verboten made it all the more difficult. I’ve experienced this myself: I’m just so extroverted that it’s rarely stopped me.

            When I first moved to Oakland, California, though, I left all my friends behind on the East Coast and it took me a long time to make new friends because I had to adapt to a different regional culture. I was very lonely for a year. So I know the sort of thing you went through.

            I agree with you that it works best to find potential dates through mutual acquaintances — certainly the explicit singles scene sucks because it’s so not about friendship or getting to know people.

            Having said that, I met my girlfriend through a signature collection petitioning job; I simply got into an extended conversation with one of the women I was petitioning and we found that we liked talking to each other. One of the things I still love about her is how interesting she is to talk to :)

            Anyway, from looking at your blog, things must have worked out well for you in the end — not in that job, but in your life in general.

  6. xander25 says:

    I lost my faith in the sex lib movement when I read “Brave New World”. It was one of the few secular novels of the last century that criticized promiscuity as being contrary to a good life. It devolves the human into mere animal. It devolves sex into being anything but about romance.

    I’ve seen too many instances where the sex revolution destroys any conception of human bonds. Notice how a friendly embrace between Frodo and Sam suddenly becomes homosexuality. Two friends, male and female, cannot even dance without others assuming it is somehow about sex. If one assumes that sex really is what life is all about…then I see how these conclusions can easily be reached.

    The fact that it requires men & women to behave without honor should be enough to give one pause. The last idea that folk should behave honorably, is the idea the men should at least pay child support, and even support for this is breaking down.

  7. mirtika says:

    My Kind of Sexual Revolution…

    Ages ago, when I was taking English Lit courses on Victorian era fiction by women, I remember learning about some early feminists who, contrary to the sexually profligate ones of today, wanted egalitarianism for men and women, and that equality would include standards of sexual PURITY for men. In other words, men as chaste prior to marriage and as faithful within it as women were expected to be. (In a time when syphillis was a scourge, this made a whole lot of sense. In a time when AIDS is a scourge, it makes even more sense.)

    I remember hollering in class, “THAT’S It! I’m THAT kind of feminists! I’m a fin de siecle feminist!!!” The fact that I uttered this in 1992, near the end of another century seemed fitting.

    I’m all for a “Back to Sanity and Purity” Sexual Revolution.

    Mir< --who argued a lot in those Women's Studies classes, I can tell you.

    • jordan179 says:

      College Experience

      What is terrible about the way in which young women are brought up in current American society is that they are urged to act against their own interests (by having sex early and without serious emotional committment on the part of the men involved: then, when they have been hurt (whether emotionally, financially, or medically) as a result of this behavior, they are urged to hate men for being the cause of their misery.

      In particular, there is a pernicious common attitude that virginity is undesirable and needs to be gotten rid of as soon as possible. This is a counterfactual belief (most young men in particular are more strongly attracted to virgins or at least women who behave reasonably chastely than to women they perceive as “sluts”) and a harmful one.

      A young woman who values her virginity may or may not wait until marriage, but she will at least try to avoid having sex until she has found a man whom she thinks will wish to marry her and whom she thinks she would wish to marry (much romantic tragedy could and has been written about the two “thinks” in that last phrase). This means that she is likely to experience sex in the context of a real loving relationship. This also means that it is more likely to be a positive and happy experience, and one which makes her like rather than dislike men in general.

      Because men are more willing to have sex than women, a young woman who goes out into society with the belief that she should lose her virginity as rapidly as possible will almost certainly succeed in her quest — and not always with a man who genuinely cares for her (much romantic comedy has been written about situations in which, against the odds, she finds such a man). This means that she will probably not first experience sex in the context of a loving relationship and may very well come to resent and even hate men.

      Modern college is socially set up in many ways as a machine designed to abuse naive young women — I’ve seen this happen a lot with rather shy girls who didn’t date or have much sexual experience (even short of intercourse) in their high school years (*). They go off to college, believe that they are “supposed” to have sex to be real “adults,” they proceed to do so with guys who don’t really like them, and then they feel terribly hurt and betrayed …

      … at which point the feminists gobble them up.

      I direct you to the figure of Ellsworth Toohey in The Fountainhead who was an early fictional model of this sort of “educator.”

      - Jordan

      (*) No, I’m not saying that the solution is for girls to have more sex in high school. I’m saying that it’s for them to rediscover the realities of the War of the Sexes and the ways in which male and female interests really do differ, especially if the guy isn’t that sure he loves the girl.

  8. xander25 says:

    Feminism & Jane Austen

    Found a feminist article this morning on Mr. Darcy. Thought you might find it interesting. I haven’t read the book, but one of my friends forced me to watch the ’95 version. The fictional character didn’t seem at all like they suggest. I’m half tempted on going out and picking up the book now. Are we even thinking of the same Mr. Darcy?

    “I believe Jane Austen’s Darcy character still exists in today’s society and still holds some women in a love like trance, exercising power over women, using and controlling women to his (usually sexual) advantage. In all walks of life such men exist; he is usually the town womaniser or ‘badboy’, picking up and dropping women whenever he likes, whereas the nice men who respect and treats women with dignity are left on the shelf, as they say, nice guys finish last.”
    –http://www.thefword.org.uk/features/2006/05/oh_mr_darcy

    • jordan179 says:

      Re: Feminism & Jane Austen

      I think that’s a serious misinterpretation of the character of Fitzwilliam Darcy. Mr. Darcy was not “brutal,” he behaved arrogantly (a rather different characteristic): his arrogant behavior was in part a defense prompted by his (quite reasonable) fear of being taken advantage of for his wealth and status.

      Mr. Darcy, for one thing, never would have “humped and dumped” (in the article’s charming terms) any woman he considered halfway respectable: although it may be taken for granted that a wealthy Regency gentleman would make use of some sort of prostitutes, and possibly have affairs with married or widowed ladies, Darcy’s strong sense of honor would prohibit him from seducing unmarried young women.

      (and yes, I’m aware of exactly the “double” or “doubly prudent” standard that implies. It was normal for the age: Jane Austen knew about it though she would never have expllicitly written about it regarding her hero in a work intended for publication).

      The real problem is that, in modern British (and to a lesser extent American) popular culture, there is no such thing as a respectable woman. All women are presumed to have voracious sexual appetites which they either act upon freely (and thus may be scorned as sluts) or repress (and thus may be scorned as hypocrites). To a large extent, the morality of the porno movie is now taken for granted.

      • xander25 says:

        Re: Feminism & Jane Austen

        “Mr. Darcy, for one thing, never would have “humped and dumped” (in the article’s charming terms) any woman he considered halfway respectable: although it may be taken for granted that a wealthy Regency gentleman would make use of some sort of prostitutes, and possibly have affairs with married or widowed ladies, Darcy’s strong sense of honor would prohibit him from seducing unmarried young women.”

        This was my interpretation as well. It is precisely Mr. Darcy’s upright moral character which would forbid such behavior. I really need to go pick up the book…I hate having to form an argument from a movie.

        Modern society likes to add that it was the Victorian prudery (or “sexual repression”) which is the cause of brutish behavior (for example: the media condemnation of the Catholic Priesthood)…a suggestion utterly illogical in it’s inception.

        I would like to posit a theory. It isn’t the fact that those modern men who are brutes are Mr. Darcy, but it’s that the brutes have learned to emulate behavior that women find attractive…whereas the “nice guys” have forgotten what manhood really means or at least have a jaded perspective on it.

      • starshipcat says:

        Re: Feminism & Jane Austen

        But does the idea of a “respectable woman” necessarily have to be antithetical to the idea that a woman may enjoy sex?

        While I don’t like the current prolifigate culture, and feel that it coarsens everyone and everything it touches, I really don’t want to go back to the time when a good woman regarded sex as a disgusting marital chore, about as pleasant as swabbing out the toilets or cleaning dirty diapers. Marriage and the joys of the marital bed should be something to be anticipated with joy by men and women alike.

        Quite honestly, I think that the best and healthiest society is one in which both men and women remain virgin in anticipation of marriage, then enjoy one another’s embrace fully within that marriage.

        • xander25 says:

          Re: Feminism & Jane Austen

          I’m not sure that this is what the good Jordan is saying.

          “But does the idea of a “respectable woman” necessarily have to be antithetical to the idea that a woman may enjoy sex?”

          “Mr. Darcy, for one thing, never would have “humped and dumped” (in the article’s charming terms) any woman he considered halfway respectable: although it may be taken for granted that a wealthy Regency gentleman would make use of some sort of prostitutes, and possibly have affairs with married or widowed ladies, Darcy’s strong sense of honor would prohibit him from seducing unmarried young women.”

          What Jordan is talking about here, is a brutish man vs the honorable one. An honorable one would treat a woman with respect and decency, not merely enjoy her for a time and then cast her aside. I, myself, find the idea that a wedded couple should not enjoy one of the many joys of their union repugnant. However, sex needs to be placed in its proper context. I need look no further than some of my friends for examples of how the sex lib philosophy is destructive and inhuman. I see relationships and friendships ruined. Good passions ruined. The one example that is actually productive is one of my co-workers who loves her daughter dearly. However, her daughter will never know her father (with good reason), and the mother faces the prospect of raising her alone. It is unlikely if the mother will ever be able to attend school and get a degree. Within the proper context, both would be far better served. That is, as I see it, truly the point.

          • starshipcat says:

            Re: Feminism & Jane Austen

            I was responding to the final paragraph, in which the concept of the respectable woman was contrasted to the idea that all women had voracious sexual appetites, in a way that seemed to suggest the old Victorian notion that a respectable woman does not enjoy sex, even with her own husband.

          • jordan179 says:

            Re: Feminism & Jane Austen

            Most people who have done sequels to Pride and Prejudice have generally envisioned Fitzwilliam and Elizabeth Darcy as enjoying a sexually-happy marriage. This is hardly anachronistic — the extreme anti-sexual attitudes of the High Victorians had not yet taken hold in Regency times, and in any case only the most fanatic of the High Victorians took those attitudes completely seriously. These fanatics were generally not found in the upper classes.

            While stating my opinion that Darcy had some previous sexual experience (since this was common among gentlemen), I would also add that he probably treated his lovers decently. Darcy was a proud man, but not a cruel or vicious man. He would not have wished to cause pain to others.

            A Fitzwilliam Darcy who was sadistic or utterly callous is simply not consistent with the character portrayed in the novel. And such a Darcy never would have won the heart of Lizzie Bennett.

            He also, to make a point highly relevant to the novel’s actual plot, would have dropped her like a hot potato the moment her sister Lydia became involved with Mr. Wickham. Fitzwilliam Darcy despised Wickham; indeed Wickham had offended the family honor by his treatment of Fitzwilliam’s sister Georgiana. By c. 1800 standards, Darcy would have been justified in calling Wickham out onto the field of honor; the LAST thing that Darcy really wanted was to be related to Wickham. But that is exactly what he was getting into by marrying Lizzie, given that Lydia married Wickham. And Darcy outright assisted in Lydia’s marriage to Wickham — because he cared for Lizzie.

            A cruel or callous man could not have done this.

        • jordan179 says:

          Re: Feminism & Jane Austen

          Quite honestly, I think that the best and healthiest society is one in which both men and women remain virgin in anticipation of marriage, then enjoy one another’s embrace fully within that marriage.

          Given the limitation of human nature and human desires, I would be perfectly happy if it were simply one in which we still believed that sex should normally be reserved for marriage, and that failure to adhere to this ideal was at least not admirable, but rather embarassing. Instead, we have a culture in which chastity is treated as freakish and undesirable, which is purely to the advantage of triflers — and, given human biology, especially to the advantage of trifling men (who can’t get pregnant).

          One thing that would help a lot would be if we still educated young women regarding actual male human nature, instead of feeding them a lot of nonsense about sexuality being all wonderful with no potential drawbacks. In humans, females are the sex which really does the choosing of mates, and more than men set the conditions under which sex is permissible. Every extreme patriarchial ideology, like modern Islam, is a huge social construct set up to try to evade or suppress this reality.

          Note that the Victorians, while economically and politically patriarchial, never imagined that it was the men who primarily controlled the making of marriages!

    • admin says:

      Re: Feminism & Jane Austen

      I have watched the Joe Wright version of PRIDE AND PREJUDICE at least six times, and am considerably impressed that Keira Knightly can actually act and do a fine job when given fine material. The movie deviates from the book only for reasons of time and composition, and in certain places, in my humble opinion, are an improvement.

      Since I am myself (so my wife tells me) the very reincarnation of D’Arcy, being both reserved and proud, I can assure you that this reviewer was not only utterly wrong about an honorable man like D’Arcy, but merits a good drubbing, unless, as the paragraph suggests, the reviewer is a mad as a hatter, in which case Bedlam is better. What rot; what utter rot. Some reviewers write like they are from Mars, and only know about the whole man-woman dynamic based on something they heard third-hand, about a species of which they know nothing. Controlling? Badboy? D’Arcy? Is this yammerhead unaware that MISTER WICKHAM is portrayed as nothing but a womanizer who weds and ruins women for money, and that whole point of D’Arcy’s character was that he was the fellow who acted not this way?

      • jordan179 says:

        Re: Feminism & Jane Austen

        Is this yammerhead unaware that MISTER WICKHAM is portrayed as nothing but a womanizer who weds and ruins women for money, and that whole point of D’Arcy’s character was that he was the fellow who acted not this way?

        That occurred to me too — that the writer of the article seems to have confused Darcy’s behavior with Wickham’s. This is an especially unfair mischaracterization, because it was one of Wickham’s sins (the attempted seduction of Darcy’s sister Georgiana) which was in part responsible for Darcy’s extreme reserve: it made him painfully aware of how others might attempt to take advantage of his family’s wealth and general benevolence (Wickham had only been in a position to do this because of the extreme trust afforded him by Darcy’s family).

        But then I sort of wonder how well the writer of that article actually knew the plot of Pride and Prejudice, anyway?

      • xander25 says:

        Re: Feminism & Jane Austen

        “I have watched the Joe Wright version of PRIDE AND PREJUDICE at least six times, and am considerably impressed that Keira Knightly can actually act and do a fine job when given fine material. The movie deviates from the book only for reasons of time and composition, and in certain places, in my humble opinion, are an improvement.”

        I’ve actually avoided this movie for a couple of reasons:
        1) I’ve never read the book. I’ve had many a fine book ruined for me after seeing the horrible adaption before reading it. I was thankful I had read “Starship Troopers” several years before that horrid movie came out.
        2) I like imagining the characters before I see them on screen. Should I ever read “The Scarlet Pimpernel”, I suppose I’ll always see Richard Grant as Sir Percy.
        3) I wasn’t sure if a modern filmmaker could portray the book with the sincerity that the book deserves. Though I’ve never read any of her books, I’ve developed a tremendous amount of respect for the woman. When I first watched the miniseries it became apparent to me how her characters placed wisdom before passion. A year or two later, after having read Epictetus, I now realize how important this work was/is. The writer of this article should be ashamed.

  9. jordan179 says:

    A Sinister Connection

    The whole point of the Sexual Revolution was to permit men to seduce, exploit and abandon women without the woman having any support or recourse.

    There is a sinister side to the Sexual Revolution in that its initial sponsors were largely rich playboys (in the 1950′s) and college professors (in the 1960′s) — in other words, men who were in a position to directly benefit from conning naive young women into believing that sexual morality was “obsolete.”

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