Hoff Sommers debunks “gender feminism” and the scare tactics its proponents use to promote their radical agenda.
Susan Faludi’s Backlash came out when I was in college, and had a tremendous impact on me. Today, I consider myself a feminist with reservations. I’ll speak out wherever I can against injustice against women, but where feminism aligns itself with the culture of death in our society I stop being a supporter. My feminism has grown into a hatred of injustice against all who are oppressed and dehumanized, in particular the elderly and the disabled.
At times, reading Who Stole Feminism? was a boisterous romp down memory lane into the ubër-PC 1990s. Hoff Sommers gives some hilarious accounts of seminars and lectures that might feel like satire for the younger generation who didn’t experience the absurdity firsthand. I was reminded of PCU, an underrated comedy classic that I always watch when it’s on TV, with its outsized depictions of overly sensitive college students clumping in agenda-defined groups. (“Hey hey, ho ho, this penis party’s go to go!”)
If there’s one thing we’ve learned in the last 5 years, as tales of female genital mutilation emerged from Africa and stories of rape used as punishment on women emerged from Muslim countries, it’s that there’s oppression, and there’s oppression. It’s easy to manufacture a personal history filled with victimization, but once you come face to face with real horror, the correct response should be compassion and validation. Comparing a leer from a stranger on the street to an instance of rape is to deny the rape victim the truth of what she (or he) has experienced.
Who Stole Feminism? is a reactionary work. I think I’ll file it on the shelf next to Katie Roiphe’s The Morning After keep it away from Simone de Beauvoir’s The Second Sex, because I have an unhealthy fear of conflict.