"The women of Bikini Kill let guitarist Billy Karren be in their feminist punk band, but only if he's willing to just "do some shit." Being a feminist dude is like that. We may ask you to "do some shit" for the band, but you don't get to be Kathleen Hannah."--@heatherurehere

Friday, March 23, 2007


There's a new Carnival of Feminists over at A Somewhat Old, But Capacious Handbag. Go check it out!

Most interesting so far to me is the post from Jeremy at Daddy Dialectic, a groupblog of stay-at-home dads. I'm not sure I agree that much with Jeremy, though, who says:

Let me tell you a story. One day I was talking with another stay-at-home parent on the playground. While our kids chased each other around the slide, we got to commiserating. I told her how overwhelmed I felt by the daily routines of childcare and housework. "Well, now you know how women have felt for centuries!" she said, almost cheerful. Right. I get it. It's a good perspective. And so, to all you ladies out there in reverse role families, let me return the favor. When I read about women who "seethe" with resentment against the obligations that supporting a family forces on them, or when I hear that they live in "terror" that they'll be the breadwinner "forever," I'm afraid that there's only one response. Get ready. You can feel it coming. Here it goes: "Well, now you know how men have felt for centuries!"

Not quite. I think it's important to recognize that being a man does come with lots of baggage--that getting up and going to work every day can take its toll, for instance, and when men were doing that more often than women (at least it was perceived as though men were doing that more than women, though this reflected a lot of ignorance around race and class), men didn't necessarily have it easy. But it seems disingenuous to imagine that women who are primary 'breadwinners' experience exactly the same level of stresses that men do--because they have all of the 'regular' stresses (i.e. deadlines, the emotional burden of having to earn the money or one's entire family loses out, etc.), but in addition they face sexism at every turn.

So, while I think it's important to recognize that few people who are primary financial earners have it 'easy', that doesn't mean that now women will feel how men feel as primary earners. Most likely they'll feel all the stresses that men feel plus more.

Also, the whole idea of there being just one person who earns the money is so foreign to most families now--perhaps there are some class issues around couples who are having the sorts of problems that Jeremy is talking about?
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