500 Great Quotes: #483

“Women are the only exploited group in history to have been idealized into powerlessness.”

    ~ Erica Jong, American writer and author.

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Commentary:  I doubt the assertion in the above quote is accurate.  Unfortunately, often “upper classes” have backhandedly tried to idealize most kinds of “lower classes” into powerlessness.  A servant was praised for being subservient or servile.  A employee was praised for their deference and loyalty.  A soldier was praised for his willingness to follow commands unquestioningly.

Nevertheless, I think Jong’s quote is marvelous to consider.  Consider the adjectives people use to praise something.  When are they backhanded, or passive-aggressive, means of praising something for its willingness to defer or give up its power?  And if something must give up its power in order to be admirable, then what does that say about the merits of that popular perception?

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