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Naomi Wolf Redeems Herself: Talking about The Beauty Myth, Pt. I

When Naomi Wolf started writing nonsensical, victim-blaming screeds about rape accusers, I thought, “Too bad I never got around to reading The Beauty Myth, because there’s no way I’m subjecting myself to more of her foolish blubbering.” I’m glad that I abandoned my initial boycott of Wolf, because I’ve found the first half of The […]

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Reading The Feminist Mystique, Pt. II: The Honeymoon’s Over

In the second half of Betty Friedan’s classic screed calling for the women of America to wake up and shake off the deadening grip of housewifery, the book begins to show its age. Amid genuinely compelling research about how corporations shill products to identity-less women, there are blithe assertions that suffocating mothers contribute to their […]

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Reading The Feminine Mystique for the First Time, Part I

I wasn’t expecting to cry while reading Betty Friedan’s classic about the mysterious ailment dogging housewives in the 1950s and 60s, but I did, twice. In reading Friedan’s own two introductions alone, I was moved by how many old, false accusations, particularly the scapegoating of women for economic stagnation and the decline of traditional family […]