I read and then re-read Joan Didion's 1972 essay, The Women's Movement. And while I disagreed with Joan in her case against the manufactured feminist revolutionary -- it didn't matter a bit. As I read, what mattered -- to me and doubtless others -- is her sweeping use of language, her ability to craft an argument resonant with allusion, dimension and colour. In this essay, Didion's observations are cutting, lyrical and unambiguous -- the women's movement is a symptom of misguided ideology that extols whiners.
Didion presses some hot buttons and torches the movement's thought leaders who "failed to make that inductive leap from the personal to the political." The bigger picture: life is hard, so cultivate some character and get on with it: "...nobody forces women to buy the package."
50 years downstream from second wave feminism, Didion could not have foreseen its impact. For one, the normative binary construct is viewed as one possibility in a landscape of diverse gender identities.
But it is Didion whom I have now finally discovered. I can't wait to read more.
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