What I really wanted to do was read for five more days and then start midwinter garden clean up. The good weather required gardening, and of course, once I got outside, I completely enjoyed the experience.
Friday, 22 January 2015
Meanwhile, Allan had done considerable weeding in his garden and had recorded his accomplishment:
I do love when the days are short and it is time to draw the curtains with many reading hours still left in the day.
My book tonight: a memoir of feminism in the 60s and 70s.
My book report is mostly positive. However, I had a problem with how Brownmiller would describe the personality flaws of other activists, like this: “Most of the group was relieved when Roxanne left” and “[the three women] possessed inventive…minds and poorly developed egos.” And more of that nature. If I were one of those woman and read the book, I’d be annoyed and embarrassed. I learned to think of the writing as more of a personal memoir, thus full of Brownmiller’s personal opinions.
Otherwise, I loved the book. I thought I knew more about feminism in the 60s than I actually did. I was especially interested in actions taken while I was still in high school. I defined myself as a feminist since first reading a book (maybe The Feminine Mystique) at about age 14. But I had no idea that as late as 1970 “unescorted” (by men) women were not allowed into establishments like the Russian Tea Room…not even a mother and daughter going out for a birthday treat. “The humiliating policy was enforced by bartenders with uncommon zeal” till a women’s sit in brought this particular form of discrimination to an end.
The stories of painful schisms in the movement brought back memories. Human nature seems to lead to conflict in all sorts of groups whether entertainment oriented or politically based. Thus it is even more remarkable how much the second wave of feminism accomplished. Like many woman who were activists back in those days, I feel that many of “the young women of today” sort of take for granted the results our intense efforts, and at the same time, I am both filled with joy at their opportunities and frustrated at how much social justice remains to be won.
Tomorrow: more gardening.