Tuesday, July 28, 2015

He's not your girlfriend

Camille Paglia posits that the the unhappiness of successful women is unrealistic expectations of men:
Wherever I go to speak, whether it’s Brazil or Italy or Norway, I find that upper-middle-class professional women are very unhappy. This is a global problem! And it’s coming from the fact that women are expecting men to provide them with the same kind of emotional and conversational support and intimacy that they get from their women friends.  And when they don’t get it, they’re full of resentment and bitterness.  It’s tragic!

Women are blaming men for a genuine problem that I say is systemic.  It has to do with the transition from the old, agrarian culture to this urban professional culture, where women don’t have that big support network that they had in the countryside.  All four of my grandparents and my mother were born in Italy.  In the small country towns they came from, the extended family was the rule, and the women were a force unto themselves.  Women had a chatty group solidarity as they did chores all day and took care of children and the elderly.  Men and women never had that much to do with each other over history!  There was the world of men and the world of women.  Now we’re working side-by-side in offices at the same job.  Women want to leave at the end of the day and have a happy marriage at home, but then they put all this pressure on men because they expect them to be exactly like their female friends.  If they feel restlessness or misery or malaise, they automatically blame it on men.  Men are not doing enough; men aren’t sharing enough.  But it’s not the fault of men that we have this crazy and rather neurotic system where women are now functioning like men in the workplace, with all its material rewards.
Of course, having been deprived of their traditional world, men have built a virtual one in which most women are not comfortable. I'm not sure I agree with her, although it would explain why so many women seem determined to transform men into women, as well as why so many of the losers appear willing to oblige.

37 comments:

AmyJ said...

It comes from that silly notion that your spouse should be your "best friend". It drives me up the wall when I hear it.

Crowhill said...

I just read that interview. I usually find something from Paglia to like, but this one left me cold.

While there is some truth to the idea that modern women want men to be their girlfriends, trying to pin female unhappiness on that is a stretch. Women are unhappy because they have adopted a set of unwomanly expectations and attitudes.

Res Ipsa said...

To summarize:

Women are happier working at home with other women, taking care of the kids and house. They aren't doing that and its all men's fault.

We oppress them when they stay home. We oppress them when they have a career. We oppress them when we don't read their mind. We oppress them when we try to anticipate what they like. It's all men's fault.

swiftfoxmark2 said...

We oppress them when they stay home. We oppress them when they have a career. We oppress them when we don't read their mind. We oppress them when we try to anticipate what they like. It's all men's fault.

Which is why we need to ignore them when they ask for things like this and instead tell them to knock it off.

Cail Corishev said...

She's right about the first part. When there was a housewife (and possibly a grandmother) in most homes during the day, they chatted with each other over the clothesline, popped into each other's houses to borrow things, and generally found ways to socialize throughout the day. Then they got air conditioning and clothes dryers, traded the backyard garden for the grocery store, and went to work. But even the ones who stayed home ended up much more isolated than they used to be.

I don't think much of her conclusion, though. She's making it too complicated. Also, women who work in female-dominated offices where they turn the place into a high school and socialize all day long are some of the worst this way. And I doubt a 1950s secretary who was the only woman in the office was as bad.

So it's not: "Women are isolated --> they try to make their men act like women --> it doesn't work --> they're unhappy." It's just: "Women are living unfeminine lives --> they are unhappy." So they take it out on their men. Not because of anything the men are or aren't doing, really; just because they're there and can be used as a scratching post with little fear of reprisal these days.

Stickwick Stapers said...

One of my colleagues is from Eastern Europe, and, like me, she works part-time so she can spend most of her time with her two daughters. And, like me, she is very lonely. She talks about how back home everyone has a ton of extended family, and all of the neighborhood women are out on their front porches, and in and out of each other's houses talking to each other all day as their children play. It's not like that here in the U.S. So, even though she and I are home most of the day, everyone else is at work, and it's excruciatingly lonely.

My church mentor is in ministry and works with female professors at the many universities in the area. She said the feelings of loneliness and isolation are epidemic. There is not much collegiality anymore. Fifteen years ago, when I first started at my university job, there was a lot more interaction in the departments, a lot more socializing. That's mostly gone now. Part of the reason for that is the extreme pressure to perform (publishing, teaching, committees, mentoring) and competing for very limited resources. So, instead of interacting with each other, most of these professors work in isolation. Women are not meant to work like that.

I find myself, not blaming my husband, but feeling as though there is something missing at home and always striving to fix it. However, the times when I can manage to spend time with my female friends, I feel much more at peace at home.

The sad truth is, we women did this to ourselves. We thought we wanted what men had, but we're not made to work the way men do. I don't know how we go back to the old way of doing things. Maybe that will come after things fall down around us and we build it back up again.

hank.jim said...

Women need to move on for their own sake. This navel gazing is destructive to their mental health. I doubt the Cosby effect will have much carry over to Bill Clinton. He still have his feminist protectors. Until Gloria Allred gets a Bill Clinton subpoena, this won't get far.

Cail Corishev said...

So women being home alone (with kids) all day isn't healthy, and socializing with other women at work all day isn't healthy. It looks like they need the combination: home with the kids, with a community of other women around.

But as Stickwick said, I don't know how you get there from here. Most women won't voluntarily give up on trying to have it all, and too many men are still trying to drag more of them into male spaces, as in the "Moar Girl Gamers!" nonsense.

HanSolo said...

She calls out the mattress girl:

"Perpetually lugging around your bad memories–never evolving or moving on! It’s like a parody of the worst aspects of that kind of grievance-oriented feminism. I called my feminism “Amazon feminism” or “street-smart feminism,” where you remain vigilant, learn how to defend yourself, and take responsibility for the choices you make. If something bad happens, you learn from it. You become stronger and move on. But hauling a mattress around on campus? Columbia, one of the great Ivy League schools with a tremendous history of scholarship, utterly disgraced itself in how it handled that case. It enabled this protracted masochistic exercise where a young woman trapped herself in her own bad memories and publicly labeled herself as a victim, which will now be her identity forever. This isn’t feminism–which should empower women, not cripple them."

b1bae96e-6447-11e3-b6bb-000f20980440 said...

The under 45 Women's social networks these days are fairly dangerous. Odds are somebody they know is divorced, and a handful are emasculating their husbands, and all kinds of toxic feminist claptrap. That is the problem when you are fed manure from birth.

HanSolo said...

And she criticizes the "nursery-school campus":

"Now we have people emerging with Ivy League degrees who have no idea how little they know about history or literature. Their minds are shockingly untrained. They’ve been treated as fragile emotional beings throughout their schooling. The situation is worsening year by year, as teachers have to watch what they say and give trigger warnings, because God forbid that American students should have to confront the brutal realities of human life."

Corvinus said...

There was the world of men and the world of women. Now we’re working side-by-side in offices at the same job.

So... it would appear, yet again, that segregation isn't as horrible as commonly made out.

VD said...

Part of the reason for that is the extreme pressure to perform (publishing, teaching, committees, mentoring) and competing for very limited resources. So, instead of interacting with each other, most of these professors work in isolation. Women are not meant to work like that.

The other part is why would you socialize when it's more likely to get you in trouble than almost anything else you can do? Men can't socialize with other men at work or they'll get in trouble for not socializing with the women. Men can't socialize with the women at work because it's a sexual harassment accusation waiting to happen.

So, you just keep your head down, do your job, and only talk to those colleagues you must.

liberranter said...

The under 45 Women's social networks these days are fairly dangerous. Odds are somebody they know is divorced, and a handful are emasculating their husbands, and all kinds of toxic feminist claptrap. That is the problem when you are fed manure from birth.

Exactly. Unless the women who are part of this circle are grounded in traditional (preferably Christian) culture, the atmosphere is very likely to be nothing but a miasma of poisonous discontentment and toxic drama.

Paglia cites the community enjoyed by her Italian grandmothers as a positive example, but that only worked because the dominant culture nourished such a thing. That is wholly untrue of today's Amerikan culture; indeed, such an anachronism as Paglia describes is decidedly and obviously countercultural. Add to this the fact that not only does contemporary Amerika lack healthy, intact large families that lend themselves to this kind of support, but also lacks any sense of community (except maybe in rural areas or in certain ethnic urban enclaves). Further aggravating this is the all-pervasive attitude of selfishness and competitiveness (fostered by TPTB, who are determined to take total control of everyone and everything). None of this will go away, short of total systemic collapse.

Laguna Beach Fogey said...

Let's not overthink it. Women are unhappy in the office and the boardroom because they are not supposed to be there; it contradicts their nature. Career women are perpetual fish-out-of-water. They are out of their natural habitat. So it's no wonder they're unhappy.

hank.jim said...

"Men can't socialize with other men at work or they'll get in trouble for not socializing with the women."

The double standard remains. There's nothing to stop women from socializing with other women. They still have women's business networks to help women and there's no societal effort to stop the exclusion of men. Men won't say anything if women want to be with other women. That women work in isolation is telling. I do wonder what's up with that. I notice that there's no shortage of chatty women and women do use any opportunity to gossip in the professional environment.

Jourdan said...

@Stickwick Stapers

One of my colleagues is from Eastern Europe, and, like me, she works part-time so she can spend most of her time with her two daughters. And, like me, she is very lonely. She talks about how back home everyone has a ton of extended family, and all of the neighborhood women are out on their front porches, and in and out of each other's houses talking to each other all day as their children play. It's not like that here in the U.S. So, even though she and I are home most of the day, everyone else is at work, and it's excruciatingly lonely.

This is precisely why, although their policies are failures and people are generally more unhappy now then before the Liberal Revolution of 1968, the Left still has no shortage of recruits in the United States.

Many thinking and sensible young men and women looking at this world you have described so well growing up can only conclude that there is something dreadfully wrong. And where are they going to point the finger?

Where is everyone? At work. Thus, problem = capitalism, which forces everyone to work, two-income families. Why is there no culture, no society? People are commuting to and from work and when they get home, exhausted. Thus, problem = Capitalism.

What do they see as having been gained by the American Way of Life? Stupid McMansions, useless luxury cars, toys, brand name competition, brutal entertainment.

Until the Right can provide BETTER answers to the young than the Left (and it can, it just has failed to do so), the Left will continue to reap talent.

Corvinus said...

@Jourdan

It's the Hegelian conflict. In the Middle Ages, free enterprise and fostering a community were both considered praiseworthy. But nowadays, free enterprise has morphed into cutthroat laissez-faire capitalism, which appeals to high-achieving men but turns off male losers and women because it tosses out any sense of community or social welfare, whereas fostering a community / social welfare has morphed into communism, which appeals to male losers and women but turns off high-achieving men because it tosses out free enterprise.

ScuzzaMan said...

well, **somebody** is being unrealistic - that much is clear.

Stickwick Stapers said...

VD: The other part is why would you socialize when it's more likely to get you in trouble than almost anything else you can do? Men can't socialize with other men at work or they'll get in trouble for not socializing with the women. Men can't socialize with the women at work because it's a sexual harassment accusation waiting to happen.

This is, unfortunately, true. Nobody knows what the social rules are anymore, so it's easier to just keep to yourself.

Matamoros said...

There was the world of men and the world of women. Now we’re working side-by-side in offices at the same job.

Actually these two worlds interacted very well. Women recognized mens' roles and interacted with them in housework, cooking, etc. Men recognized womens' roles and interacted with them in male chores, disciplining the children, taking her out occasionally, etc. And it worked for both.

Natalie said...

Also - socializing with women can be rather costly for women themselves. We no longer have community values that largely overlap and wherein women can be comfortable. Even at church, saying the wrong thing about healthcare or parenting can lead to some awkward silences, and I for sure don't air all my principles with my volunteer friends. The work we do is valuable, but the organization itself is infested with SJWs. This list of potential hot topics includes: birth choices, parenting, healthcare, food, "human rights" of all kinds, etc. You have to go slowly and figure out which parts of yourself are safe to share in what setting. It's all very fragmented and discouraging and doesn't make for a very supportive community for young moms.

(Also, can I just say that older/more experienced Christian moms really do need to be reaching out more. When the SJW's are the ones leading mom groups and doing birth and parenting education and largely running the young mom community it doesn't look good for the Church.)

Marissa said...

Where is everyone? At work. Thus, problem = capitalism, which forces everyone to work, two-income families. Why is there no culture, no society? People are commuting to and from work and when they get home, exhausted. Thus, problem = Capitalism.

Robert Putnam's Bowling Alone blamed television. He wrote off women going into the workplace as a reason for the collapse of social and civic culture in the U.S. I'd bet it was a significant contributor though.

Bob Wallace said...

If a man says the "wrong" thing at work he's facing sexual harassment charges. I've seen it more than once. So, don't talk to woman when at work!

JAY WILL said...

One thing I took from that was only a hardcore lesbo would ever be allowed to express such clear wrongthink in the authoro-fascist clickbait universe of The Salon.

Also, the problems of the past were much worse. People had less time to whinge and just got on with it. Theres a rose tinted view of the past that helps to create this "where did it all go wrong" thinking. The truth about now is it's TOO EASY. We are like animals in the zoo, humans need adversity, they need struggle. Think of the obscene luxury that allows the collective whinge that the internet is. The successful countries get fat, rich, weak, their weaker males survive and sometimes breed. All the hard men are at the bottom, cos its harder to breed down there with lower status, if you are smaller down there you will fail more often. Its all reducible to skull size, jaw size, cuckservative man knows this deep in his being, he is weak. He is reliant on wealth, he secretly fears the barbarian who will take it all off him. The people at the top are frauds, weak men, cunts. Google Ll*oyd Bl*ankfe*in, look at that smirking face, he is a cunt. They all look like that. Another billionaire loser. I am weak too, shame, disgust. So lonely.

ray said...

"This isn’t feminism–which should empower women, not cripple them."


Paglia -- old, zillions of words written, still does not get it. Still clings to Feminism while pretending to wonder why the world is going to shit. Pays well, great gig!

Ain't giving up their empowerment. Demand 'love' from men, demand strong men, demand uber-homeland-security, demand independent lives, demand endless empowerments.

And this is among the brightest of females. Yet after all this, 100% refuses to get it. Because that would mean giving up their precious Sovereignty and power. So, croak-off to all of them.

Karl said...

OT: Pornhub released stats on what categories/keywords women search for on the site.
Link to metro.co.uk sorta SFW

Unsurprisingly, women are most interested in watching females being pleasured, with searches to do with cunnilingus like ‘man eating pussy,’ ‘guy eating girl out,’ and ‘hardcore pussy eating’ also growing in popularity.

As ‘hardcore pussy eating’ indicates – it looks as if preconceptions that women want gentle and romantic porn are outdated.

Terms involving hardcore or rough sex like ‘hard rough f**k’ and ‘f**ked hard screaming’ saw growth of around 300%. Which might explain why the ‘For Women’ category, which usually focuses on more romantic scenarios, is in decline.


macengr said...

What happens when the trigger warning crowd gets into the real working world - if they get their policies implemented there, have trigger rooms and safe spaces and can get a co-worker or boss fired for "triggering" them, does corporate competitiveness go right down the drain...does that accelerate the decline?

Weouro said...

It's not about the old, agrarian culture. There were neighborhoods in cities, too, with intact extended families. It's not because of the industrial revolution or technology. It's because Lucy and Ethel decided they were just as equal to men as men are, messed everything up and wen't "Waahhhhh!"

Michael Maier said...

Stickwick: "This is, unfortunately, true. Nobody knows what the social rules are anymore, so it's easier to just keep to yourself."

I find it greatly amusing that with all the sexual harassment accusation fears, I've been very inappropriate in that realm but only ever been counseled for being a jerk in NON-sexual fashion - at a federal job, no less.

My favorite thus far was slapping a woman's ass with a folder so hard she had to "fix her underwear". Right in front of multiple witnesses.

Eric said...

...if they get their policies implemented there, have trigger rooms and safe spaces and can get a co-worker or boss fired for "triggering" them, does corporate competitiveness go right down the drain...does that accelerate the decline?

If they really try to shape the workplace like that nobody will hire them.

John rockwell said...

@Jourdan

No capitalism does not in any way contribute other than already amplify what is already there. Which is the erosion of the community through progressivist values.

Stop making capitalism the bogeyman for everything.

hank.jim said...

Milo of Breitbart has a new column on ugly feminists. A gem of an article.

modsquad said...

Read the book Roots. In the African village, all the women lived on one side with the grandmothers, children and boys under seven. On the other side lived the men and boys seven and older. If a man wanted to sleep with his wife, he paid her a visit then went back to his own hut.

Everyone helped out planting and harvesting, othwise the women took care of the fields while the men either hunted or tended to the livestock. There was no rich, no poor, no hypergamy, no divorce rape. Advanced civilization compared to ours.

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Joshua Sinistar said...

Yeah, don't you believe it. I'm not saying she's lying, but she's a lesbian and guys should not take relationship advice from the other team. If you start being your girl's friend, say good-bye to your sex life dude, because that will just take you to the friend zone. And let me tell you right now, if you start listening to her, that's a whole new career full of horror and misunderstanding. Men and women are different. I'll take a moment while the leftists get it together after their head just exploded. Women do not communicate like men. When men talk its a story about something, it has a beginning and an end and everything is somehow related to the topic. Women are not at all like that. When a woman talks to you, its like a data dump from a computer. Her whole memory bank just comes out in a jumbled and incoherent mass exactly like it was loaded. There is no point and there is no coherent strand to hold it together. Women have this idea where they want intimacy, and so they tell you everything they want you to know about the time they're not with you. Its a jumbled list of what she did, what she thought and what she felt. If you don't have the kind of patience where you can stand in line at the DMV without getting antzy, then don't try this at home.

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