Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Fay Weldon - The F Word

The July issue of Easy Living Magazine features The F Word: an introduction by Fay Weldon. Whilst Weldon acknowledges a New Feminism which isn't anti-man or anti-sex; the fact our feminist actions need not focus merely on our experiences as Western women and the persisting negative connotation of the term 'feminism', there is one thing which troubled me very early in the piece:

"But then feminists committed the worst sin of all - they became boring. They will go on being seen as boring, I fear, until they acknowledge what everyone accepts except them - that men and women are different, physiologically and psychologically, and that sex is important. It's a Freud thing".

Coming from a sociology, rather than psychology, background I just can't get my head around this assertion. I also cannot envision that this is the key issue 'holding back feminism' or that it is what has made us "boring" (though I can't even imagine us being accused of being boring!). Why is sex important? What if sex itself is a construction? (and there are those who would argue just that!) How can we completely disregard the differences society creates of us in favor of such apparent innate ones*?

Aside from this niggling bit for me, the article was an enjoyable read; particularly Fay Weldon's brief charting of the feminist movement with tidbits from her own life. Has anyone else had the chance to see this? Or does anyone else have any thoughts on this?


*strangely enough I picked up a book from Waterstones today about gender and schooling/careers which actually speaks from a psychological, rather than sociological, perspective. Expect thoughts also on that to follow!

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