Part of me has certainly been motivated by wanting to take a stand against the restrictions that made Mother give up so much.
An accurate charting of American women's progress through history might look more like a corkscrew tilted slightly to one side, its loops inching closer to the line of freedom with the passage of time-but, like a mathematical curve approaching infinity, never touching its goal.
Keeping the peace with the particular man in one's life becomes more essential than battling the mass male culture.
Women who had discovered pants, low-heeled shoes, and loose sweaters during World War II were reluctant to give them up in peacetime.
As women began to challenge their own internalized views of a woman's proper place, their desire and demand for equal status and free choice began to grow exponentially.
That so-called feminine ardor for clothes shopping had been flagging for some time. Between 1980 and 1986, at the same time that women were buying more houses, cars, restaurant dinners, and health care services, they were buying fewer pieces of clothing-from dresses to underwear.
Women are enslaved by their own liberation.
When the enemy has no face, society will invent one.
For some high-profile men in trouble, women, especially feminist women, became the all-purpose scapegoats-charged with crimes that often descended into the absurd.
The American woman has not yet slipped into a cocoon, but she has tumbled down a rabbit hole into sudden isolation.
What happened with Hurricane Katrina was the American electorate was forced to look at what lay behind the veneer of chest-beating. We all saw the consequences of having terrible government leadership.
The women's movement hit my neighborhood like a freight train. Everybody got divorced. You wonder what would have happened to women if the suburbs hadn't been built.
The media and the rest of popular culture weren't recording people's reactions to 9/11; they were forcing made-up reactions down people's throats.
As it turns out, social scientists have established only one fact about single women's mental health: employment improves it.
I think a reason that a lot of people feel politically paralysed is that it used to be clear how power was organised. But those who have their hands on the levers of popular culture today have great power - and it isn't even clear who they are.
A lot of people seem to want to make the institution of marriage substitute for a real relationship.
Divorced men are more likely to meet their car payments than their child support obligations.
The system of heroism depends on women to be weak so men can be strong.
All of women's aspirations-whether for education, work, or any form of self-determination-ultimately rest on their ability to decide whether and when to bear children. For this reason, reproductive freedom has always been the most popular item in each of the successive feminist agendas-and the most heavily assaulted target of each backlash.
The culture used to move relatively slowly, so you could take aim. Now it moves so fast, and is so fluffy and meaningless, you feel like an idiot even complaining about it.
In place of equal respect, the nation offered women the Miss America beauty pageant, established in 1920-the same year women won the vote.
A backlash against women's rights is nothing new. Indeed it's a recurring phenomenon: it returns every time women begin to make some headway towards equality, a seemingly inevitable early frost to the brief flowerings of feminism.
Feminism's agenda is basic: It asks that women not be forced to 'choose' between public justice and private happiness.
The 'feminine' woman is forever static and childlike. She is like the ballerina in an old-fashioned music box, her unchanging features tiny and girlish, her voice tinkly, her body stuck on a pin, rotating in a spiral that will never grow.
the point of feminism ... is to win women a wider range of experience. Feminism remains a pretty simple concept, despite repeated - and enormously effective - efforts to dress it up in greasepaint and turn its proponents into gargoyles.
The modern fairy tale ending is the reverse of the traditional one: A woman does not wait for Prince Charming to bring her happiness; she lives happily ever after only by refusing to wait for him - or by actually rejecting him. It is those who persist in hoping for a Prince Charming who are setting themselves up for disillusionment and unhappiness.
Social scientists could supply plenty of research to show that one member of the family, at least, is happier and more well adjusted when mum stays home and looks after the children. But that person is dada finding of limited use to backlash publicists.
the backlash convinced the public that women's 'liberation' was the true contemporary American scourge - the source of an endless laundry list of personal, social, and economic problems.
the last decade has seen a powerful counterassault on women's rights, a backlash, an attempt to retract the handful of small and hard-won victories that the feminist movement did manage to win for women. This counterassault is largely insidious: in a kind of pop-culture version of the Big Lie, it stands the truth boldly on its head and proclaims that the very steps that have elevated women's position have actually led to their downfall.
the central argument of the backlash - that women's equality is responsible for women's unhappiness.
the heart of the backlash argument: women are better off 'protected' than equal.
My goal is to be accused of being strident.
The demand that women "return to femininity" is a demand that the cultural gears shift into reverse, that we back up to a fabled time when everyone was richer, younger, more powerful.
The women's movement. . . has proved women's own worst enemy.
Self-esteem is the basis for feminism because self-esteem is based on defining yourself and believing in that definition. Self-esteem is regarding yourself as a grown-up.
The economic victims of the era are men who who know someone has made off with their future- and they suspect the thief is a woman.
Having whipped single women into high marital panic-or "nuptialitis," as one columnist called it- the press hastened to soothe fretted brows with conjugal tonic.
To be unwed and female was to succumb to an illness with only one known cure: marriage.