Archive | September, 2011

Sexy Parents, Sanctimonious Kids

 I wrote a long time ago, in response to the fact that so many women were leaving their marriages:  “In the past 25 years women have bloomed. How can we still be talking about fitting modern wives back into an ancient institution, rather than enlarging an ancient institution to make room for modern wives?” I said this on television shows, much to the horror of many hosts, who got so mad that women were leaving (and not men, as I suppose they thought was better). that they blamed me for writing about it.  

 Well they must be really mad now, because America isn’t even a married culture anymore.  That picture of ourselves talk-show hosts and politicians and so many others insist on—the happily married American couple–is a very nice picture, but it has little to do with us in the US. No, as I’ve said a million times, we’re now a dating culture. What’s more, the Pew Research Center points out that nearly four-in-ten survey respondents in the 2010 Census said they believed that marriage is becoming obsolete.

Continue Reading →

Share

Coming up Next!: The Weird Fun of Banned Books Week

It’s weirdly fun, on the cusp of Banned Books Week, to look at the titles of books that have been banned: Gone with the Wind; To Kill a Mockingbird; Beloved; The Great Gatsby; The Catcher in the Rye; and, of course, Ulysses.  And the bylines: The authors of the aforementioned, along with Voltaire and Defoe, Chaucer and Aristophanes, Rousseau and Paine, Pascal and Steinbeck and Hemingway and Faulkner and Twain.

Okay, “fun” may not be quite the right word (although Brave New World was banned as recently as 1980 for making “promiscuous” sex “look like fun”). But can’t you just see censorship committee members, one more sanctimonious than the next, poring over page after page to find a “filthy” word or an “indecent” scene? Oh, the outrage these men must suffer in their noble venture! The vicious arguments they must have over the subtle differences between “lewd” and “obscene”;  between “filthy” and “indecent”!  What a responsibility! And all to protect us from…..from what?  Alice Walker’s The Color Purple was banned for its “troubling ideas about race relations, man’s relationship to God, African history and sexual relations,” all of which troubling ideas are the reasons she wrote it.

Continue Reading →

Share

Who’s Sabotaging Teenage Girls?

     In any story, whether we read it or see it on film or in a store window, we have to know  who  is speaking. Whose voice is telling us what story? Whose point of view is it?  A  great  story at the moment, spoken by the Census, is about women’s increased  power. Women are  now the majority of the workforce; the majority of managers; the majority earners of  undergraduate and graduate degrees; the majority owners of wealth.

So, who is narrating the story of this photo in Victoria’s Secret window in Fairfield, Ct.?  (We added the type to illustrate where it might have been more appropriately shown) Odd  that the moment when women are powering ahead, storefronts and magazine covers  feature skinny young girls not only made  up to look like fashionable adults, but posing in a  way that clearly suggests  subjugation—as  does the girl above. Whose viewpoint is this, do  you think? Who’s telling girls about to inherit a legacy of unprecedented power that their  REAL power lies not in their education and their upcoming careers, but rather, in looking  like baby hookers,  pouting and bruised and with their arms up in their air as if in chains?  Are storeowners telling this story so they  can sell underwear? Perhaps. Photographers,  who want to make their mark? Maybe.

Continue Reading →

Share

Goodbye, Goddess!

A few years ago, I stuck my toe in the blogosphere by adopting an avatar: “The Love Goddess.”  Using her name, I’d  see if I liked blogging; plus, I’d be less radical and outspoken than I usually am, but still  help women cope with bad men, weird in-laws, resentful stepchildren, creepy online dating issues, all those relationship troubles and self – diminishing problems that fill my books and my office. The Connecticut artist Miggs Burroughs, one of the producers of my television show,  created the whimsical logo.  Steve Leedom, the talented and patient design and marketing man, and now a friend, helped me create a gorgeous, gentle site that appealed to viewers who might not want to spend the money to go to a therapist, maybe, but who could instead have access to one—me. The Love Goddess offered “the best advice in the universe.” And soon I was asked to blog on other larger, more high-profile sites—Wowowow.com, More.com, Hitched.com., Intent.com, to name a few. and I did so mostly as The Love Goddess. Too, I started a weekly TV show about relationships, The Love Goddess Show, in Connecticut.   

Continue Reading →

Share

UA-22388103-2