By Susan Faludi
Skillfully Probing the assault on Women’s Rights
“Opting-out,” “security moms,” “desperate housewives,” “the new child fever”—the pattern tales of 2006 go away doubtless that American girls are nonetheless being barraged by way of a similar backlash messages that Susan Faludi brilliantly uncovered in her 1991 bestselling e-book of revelations. Now, the publication that reignited the feminist circulation is again in a 15th anniversary version, with a brand new preface by way of the writer that brings backlash attention brand new.
When it was once first released, Backlash made headlines for puncturing such favourite media myths because the “infertility epidemic” and the “man shortage,” myths that confounded statistical realities. those willfully fictitious media campaigns extra as much as an antifeminist backlash. no matter what growth feminism has lately made, Faludi’s phrases this present day look prophetic. The media nonetheless love tales approximately stay-at-home mothers and the “dangers” of women’s profession objectives; the glass ceiling remains to be low; ladies are nonetheless punished for desirous to be triumphant; simple reproductive rights are nonetheless placing via a thread. The backlash basically exists.
With ardour and precision, Faludi indicates in her new preface how the creators of business tradition distort feminist suggestions to promote items whereas promoting ladies downstream, how the feminist ethic of financial independence is twisted into the patron ethic of shopping for strength, and the way the feminist quest for self-determination is warped right into a self-centered quest for self-improvement. Backlash is a vintage of feminism, an alarm bell for girls of each new release, reminding us of the hazards that we nonetheless face.
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Additional info for Backlash: The Undeclared War Against American Women
92 Discounting the cultural inﬂuences Horney emphasized, Deutsch nonetheless did not fully reject Freud’s concept of penis envy. Rather, she replaced it with what she referred to as women’s sense of “organlessness” as the primary, fundamental experience of femininity. ” Without a penis, the marker of aggressive sexuality, the girl felt that she had no organ for her active sexuality. This sense of physiological limitation induced her to give up what had been her primary sexual organ, the clitoris.
Genital trauma . ”94 In short, Deutsch explained that the female body (not the sight of the penis) produced masochistic femininity and a rejection of the clitoris as inadequate. In their recuperation of the female body as unique, Horney and Deutsch helped to produce a new style of heterosexuality that valued women’s sexuality. Yet, their work also shared the widespread ambivalence about active, aggressive female sexuality found in the discourse of the companionate marriage. Along with Van Der Velde, Horney and Deutsch had to resolve the tension between the new importance granted to female sexual pleasure and the fears set off by the specter of uncontainable female modern women and modern marriage 35 sexuality.
Transplanted and transformed in America, Freud’s theories were popularly enlisted to help overturn the now outdated Victorian view of women 20 modern women and modern marriage as passionless and marital sex as primarily reproductive. Freud asserted that a drive for pleasure motivated not only men but also women and, scandalously, children as well. 23 Although repression was an inevitable consequence of civilization, Freud explained, too much repression led to neurosis and mental instability. Even for average people, repression and the unconscious conﬂict between responsibility (the ego) and pleasure (the id) generated stress and melancholy.
Backlash: The Undeclared War Against American Women by Susan Faludi