Feminists have attacked the traditional family structure for years from Betty Friedan's (1963) 'The Feminine Mystique' to Greer's anti-male anti-family bestseller 'The Female Eunuch' (1970) and beyond. Friedan dismisses the role of stay-at-home mother ('SAHM') as an easy and trivial job and even blames SAHMs for divorce, homosexuality, child abuse and juvenile delinquency.
Feminism does not have a history of being family-friendly, though the reasons for this seem to be more psychologically motivated than socially. By this I mean is that despite there being no real reason why women can only have equality through the destruction of the traditional family unit (Mother, Father, children) feminists have been forceful in rejecting a life in the traditional family as a choice for women. Here are some of the things said by feminists re the family and traditional family roles:
"Being a housewife is an illegitimate profession... being a family-maker is a choice that shouldn't be. The heart of radical feminism is to change that". Vivian Gornick, The Daily Illini (Urbana), 25 April 1981. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vivian_Gornick
Greer's words are worth repeating in this context: "God knows how many women already have no use for their men, who are all too often idle and incompetent both as wage-earners and around the house, uninterested in the children and hopeless in bed…" Germaine Greer (2001) http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_qn4158/is_20011208/ai_n14426321/pg_2
"In order to raise children with equality, we must take them away from families and communally raise them." Dr. Mary Jo Bane, feminist and assistant professor of education at Wellesley College and associate director of the school's Center for Research on Woman (Source: Quoted by Dolores Barclay, Associate Press writer, Tulsa World, August 21, 1977.)
There seems to be a special resentment of the role of the father in feminism, and it has been suggested that this resentment was part of the reason for the wave of false child sex abuse allegation in the 1980s based on false memories of abuse ('false memory syndrome'). Guilliatt (1996a) implicates feminist groups "with an anti-male attitude that promotes an image of the inevitable male-parental hurt of female children, and that wishes to punish all men, especially the father figure" http://www.massey.ac.nz/~trauma/issues/1998-3/gow1.htm
· 9 years ago