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Lieter's grammatically challenged post ("Profs critiques") is so vague that I'm not sure whether he is sucking up to feministlawprofs or to you. I imagine that you do consider yourself a feminist, just one with a sense of proportion and humor. Does this count as sucking up? Are you laughing at me?
Well, I certainly consider myself a feminist. And I'm dismayed by definitions of feminism that are overbroad -- like the one I criticized -- because they dilute the power of feminism to attack what really should be attacked. Make no mistake: Leiter means to hurt my reputation. He thinks the Feminist Law Professors -- it'st the title of the blog and thus, arguably, singular -- will appreciate his support in the form of his low, drive-by attack on me and that he will gain stature as a defender of feminism. This use of feminism as a mode of self-promotion, when done by a man, should be looked on with suspicion.
Real feminists laugh. My wife, most of my female friends. Those grim, Stalinist, soulless types that don't laugh may call themselves feminists, but that doesn't make it sol
I can't speak with authority as to Leiter's intent, although from a spotty review of his site over the years I suspect he sides with feministlawprofs (flps--flips? flaps? flops?). But in comparing the linked posts, I think you come across as more reasonable and humane than the flps. Therefore, whatever his intent, I don't think he would do any damage. I suspect that the universe of people who matter in terms of your professional reputation already know the score.
Stephen: Thanks for that link, but I'm deleting your comment because it goes to a page that's too ugly -- not referring to the photograph! -- for me to want to me linked to it. I have the link, and it was interesting, but I don't want to keep it here. I hope Leiter appreciates my restraint!
Ann Althouse said...Wurly: Probably less than half of the people who read the post will click on the links and read enough to figure that out. So the slur does have the effect he seeks. Unlike the Feminist Law Professors, he wrote a readable one-liner. People who don't want to spend much time on it and who already are the sort who read his blog are going to register the single data point: Althouse is a sexist. That's a typical day in the life of a blogger of course. By so is slamming one back at him. You've got your data point on him from me now. And my easy-to-read one-line is much more amusing and full of memorable substance. And it hurts more, because I know I'm not a sexist.
Real feminists laugh. My wife, most of my female friends. Those grim, Stalinist, soulless types that don't laugh may call themselves feminists, but that doesn't make it soThe best lesson my feminists teachers [*waves to Dr Pagan*] taught me was that groups like NOW do not represent feminists. There are as many differing types of feminists as there are Republicans. Should have been obvious to me, but thats all I had been exposed to through the media.
Feminists don't laugh.
"This use of feminism as a mode of self-promotion, when done by a man, should be looked on with suspicion." I'm honestly puzzled by this comment. Are you suggesting that the use of feminism as self-promotion shouldn't be looked upon with suspicion if a woman does it? It seems to me that what matters should be whether or not the speaker believes in the ideology they are promoting. The gender shouldn't matter, and while self-promotion can be gross, even that should be of minor concern unless one has reason to believe that the speaker doesn't really support the movement they say they are and is simply latching onto that movement for purposes of self-promotion. I don't think that can be said of Leiter, he appears by all accounts to be pro-feminist, at least as far as how the feministlawprofs define the term.
Reading through the linked stuff, and the links there, was this from a feminist quoted in an earlier Althouse post:"I was present when a hard driving female attorney won a satirical “Miss Congeniality” designation during a “jokey” awards luncheon, and I watched her muster a tight little smile as she accepted a sash and tiara to a sea of derisive laughter, and I saw her crying in the bathroom later, too."Crying in the bathroom? That should help de-stereotype women in the profession. Just like the women who were so distraught that they had to leave the room when Larry Summers did his thing. Sheesh.
Somefeller: The basis of my suspicion is 20 years in academia, in contact with many, many left-leaning men who embrace feminism basically because they have to within the left ideology. A lot of these men are not really that into it, but they have to toe the line.Women can embrace feminism for self-serving reasons too, but, at least to some extent, they need the benefits of feminism to succeed, so they are really for it because of what it is. We've usually suffered some discrimination and hardships. I know I have. Think about it. I went to high school and college with teachers who openly said and did sexist things all the time. I don't need a jackass like Leiter needling me too. His real problem with me is that I refuse to toe the line like a good lawprof and lean left.
"This use of feminism as a mode of self-promotion, when done by a man, should be looked on with suspicion." Are you kidding? How do you think half of us got laid in the 70's? Works like a charm: the old Hawkeye Pierce ploy. 'Oh, baby, yeah, take charge of your sexuality and empower yourself. Just lemme hold your ankles...'
"Is there a difference between being a liberal and leaning left?"That such a stupid question. Do your own research.
Richard: LOL. I remember those days. That's what women want, right? Alan Alda. Those were the days.
Ann -- well, I was always a little more partial to the Harpo/Benny Hill school... while the results were, um, mixed, the newspaper reports were far more entertaining...
Vicki Hearne's definition of feminism, done using Thurber's so-called misogyny, seems right to me.http://home.att.net/~rhhardine/vickihearne.feminism.txtWhy would the sexes want to differ?http://home.att.net/~rhhardin9/vickihearne.womenmath.txtI pass them along because she's dead and can't any longer.
Not to detract from the content but the best part of this post is the title.
He may alienate "the best feminists," but why must he be after them? He may be aiming much lower.
What I think is good is that feminism is I think going mainstream to the extent that it is slowly beginning to not be tied to liberal orthodoxy. What is a feminist anyway? Is is a woman who belongs to NOW? Something more radical? Or is it someone who believes that women should be able to do almost anything these days that they want to? I have never thought of Ann as really a feminist, or not as one. Middlle of the road mostly, and if anything, anti-female superiority, which some I think take as being anti-feminist, but isn't (IMHO). I read the articles as the first one being all upset at real life, and Ann saying, "Get a Life". Maybe my critical reading skills are a bit rusty... But I do agree that the swipe at Ann seems to be that she is now visibly off the reservation.
Looking back over my love life over the last almost 4 decades, I find that the vast majority of my girlfriends, etc. would be considered at least closet feminists. Somehow, I end up with women who want equal access to society, and, in particular, jobs. I am not sure if I would call it sucking up, but rather a sympathy.It has taken me that long to find women who have the strength that I look for in a woman without being feminists. Not that I am turning away from avowed feminists, but rather, I am finding that there are other alternatives. Mostly, I suspect it is a combination of having a very talented mother (Phi Beta Kappa, etc.) who I think felt constrained by the post-WWII environment of getting married and having a lot (5) of kids. Plus, a grandmother who taught college, and a string of proto-feminists in the family going back to at least the 1850s. I think that the reason that I may be straying away from the feminists that have provided my love life for so long is that it seems to have gotten to a point where feminism has shifted into female superiority. I see it all the time, as it has embedded itself in particular in our school systems and the general media. I would say that I have also drifted off the reservation as far as the litmus test goes for sympathy for the feminist cause: abortion. I was in favor of it, as long as it was a question of males not controlling women's bodies. But now we are at the point of debating whether it is ok to kill late term fetuses that could survive if delivered, in a minute or two in an emergency C-Section. And by opposing most late term abortions, I have alienated myself from many of my former feminist frends.
The best part of the link was the advertisement for Black's Law Dictionary, "Invaluable, convenient, trusted and flexible". That last part is very reassuring with all kinds of Freudian overtones/
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