Sunday, January 20, 2008

this has nothing to do with what this blog is normally about

"The modern feminist conception of power is actually a very narrow one. It judges women solely by their leadership in politics or the corporate world but belittles the power women have traditionally wielded in civil society: in raising the next generation; in their community, in the countless hours of unpaid work and voluntarism women devote to their neighborhoods and schools. This isn't to say that women can't be, or shouldn't strive to be, leaders. But it is to say-and this is a very old lesson-that worldly power as an end in itself does not necessarily make you happy, especially if you have sacrificed everything else in its attainment. Those women who have achieved eminence have usually had to do so at the (sometimes unwilling) sacrifice of their personal lives. It is striking how many of the great female writers did not have children; and nearly all of them, with or without children, had to sandwich their work between their domestic duties....But it is only women who have never had children-like Virginia Woolf and Simone de Beauvoir and so many of the feminists of our time-who could wonder why motherhood must necessarily interfere with worldly pursuits, or speculate that most women would be happier if they had perfectly unencumbered, undistracted existences. The woman for whom work is not everything, yet who sacrifices all domestic pleasures in her pursuit of independence, may discover after a time that she has transcended not only what makes her feminine but also what makes her human."
-Danielle Crittenen, What Our Mothers Didn't Tell Us

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