Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Hanna Rosin celebrates loveless youth

Confused about the state of relationships? Well, if you're not now you will be after reading Hanna Rosin's latest piece, "Boys on the side" (warning: it's crude in parts)

Rosin's essay is a clumsy attempt to reconcile the conflict between the liberal demand for an autonomous, independent, single person lifestyle based on career and casual relationships, and the normal human desires for love and family.

Rosin begins by celebrating a coarse hook up culture, which she believes is used by young women to avoid serious relationships with men so that women can dedicate themselves to career and independence:
The sexual culture may be more coarse these days, but young women are more than adequately equipped to handle it, because unlike the women in earlier ages, they have more-important things on their minds, such as good grades and intern­ships and job interviews and a financial future of their own. The most patient and thorough research about the hookup culture shows that over the long run, women benefit greatly from living in a world where they can have sexual adventure without commitment or all that much shame, and where they can enter into temporary relation­ships that don’t get in the way of future success.

OK, that makes it sound as if success in life is measured by career and independence. The message is repeated in this passage:
Single young women in their sexual prime—that is, their 20s and early 30s, the same age as the women at the business-­school party—are for the first time in history more success­ful, on average, than the single young men around them. They are more likely to have a college degree and, in aggregate, they make more money. What makes this remarkable development possible is not just the pill or legal abortion but the whole new landscape of sexual freedom—the ability to delay marriage and have temporary relationships that don’t derail education or career. To put it crudely, feminist progress right now largely depends on the existence of the hookup culture. And to a surprising degree, it is women—not men—who are perpetuating the culture, especially in school, cannily manipulating it to make space for their success, always keeping their own ends in mind. For college girls these days, an overly serious suitor fills the same role an accidental pregnancy did in the 19th century: a danger to be avoided at all costs, lest it get in the way of a promising future.

You would think that a woman's sexual prime would be the most logical time for a woman to try to attract a serious suitor - but Hanna Rosin doesn't see it this way. It's only when a woman is past her sexual prime that a serious suitor might be considered - before then he is "a danger to be avoided at all costs" as he might "get in the way of a promising future".

Now if what really matters is career and independence then why not give up on marriage altogether? Marriage, after all, requires a commitment to others. And Hanna Rosin does at times run down the idea of marriage. She writes:
There is no retreating from the hookup culture to an earlier age, when a young man showed up at the front door with a box of chocolates for his sweetheart, and her father eyed him warily. Even the women most frustrated by the hookup culture don’t really want that. The hookup culture is too bound up with everything that’s fabulous about being a young woman in 2012—the freedom, the confidence, the knowledge that you can always depend on yourself.

Women want a hookup culture, she writes. It's fabulous. It represents freedom and self-reliance. She goes on to claim that,
Young men and women have discovered a sexual freedom unbridled by the conventions of marriage, or any conventions.

So it's all clear to this point. The hookup culture, whatever distress it might cause to young women, is a source of freedom and progress for women. A lack of conventions is held to be a good thing. Best not for women to have serious or lasting relationships with men. Flings with unsuitable men are the way to go.

But then the clarity fades away. All of a sudden we get this conclusion:
But that’s not how the story ends...Ultimately, the desire for a deeper human connection always wins out, for both men and women. Even for those business-school women, their hookup years are likely to end up as a series of photographs, buried somewhere on their Facebook page, that they do or don’t share with their husband—a memory that they recall fondly or sourly, but that hardly defines them.

Oh, really? So women are to spend ages 15 to 35 rejecting a deeper human connection in favour of independence and freedom, and then at the very last gasping breath of their youthful fertility, they are suddenly to change and decide that human connection matters after all.

Come on Hanna. You can't justify wasting a woman's sexual prime on independence and freedom from convention if a deeper human connection as experienced in marriage proves to be the stronger value in the long run anyway.

If independence and sexual freedom really are the higher values to live our lives by, then we shouldn't marry at any age. We should be like the Swedes and live alone. But if a deeper human connection as expressed in marriage is the higher value, as Hanna Rosin seems to believe it ultimately proves to be, then we shouldn't waste it - we should marry in a timely way that allows us to share our sexual prime with our spouse.

Hanna Rosin seems to expect otherwise intelligent people to engage in a kind of self-sabotage - deliberately rejecting serious suitors when in our prime, only to seek them out when we're past it.

P.S. Something I missed is the significance of Rosin's final words "but that hardly defines them". The implication is that women don't want to define themselves when they're married the same way they might when they're in their 20s and hooking up. Which means that even Rosin recognises that the two identities don't go together well. She seems to be trying to reassure her female readers that they can bury the younger self that doesn't fit with being a wife and mother - the self that they might potentially be ashamed to let their husbands know about.

28 comments:

  1. "women are to spend ages 15 to 35 rejecting a deeper human connection in favour of independence and freedom, and then at the very last gasping breath of their youthful fertility, they are suddenly to change and decide that human connection matters after all."

    Needless to say, she doesn't bother to think about why a man would want to marry a pre-menopausal slut.

    Someone who is promiscuous in their youth is absolutely defined by that experience.

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  2. A fine comment here:

    http://www.patheos.com/blogs/theanchoress/2012/08/24/so-women-have-finally-succeeded-in-becoming-all-they-hate/

    It’s hard to escape the conclusion that these younger women rely on hook-ups for impersonal sexual gratification so they can set their sights on career, money and power without personal encumbrances; no clinging vines requiring their company or their humanity; no kids to distract them from the office and their pursuit of the brass ring — or the brass idol.

    How utterly depressing. The sexual revolution and its illusory notion of “having it all” has folded in upon itself to forge a chain-link of perfect irony: 21st Century women have become precisely the shallow, insincere, career-fixated, corporate people-users that early feminists decried.

    Women were going to teach men how to be human, remember? Instead, they’ve become everything they claimed to hate.

    Now, all they need is a wife to raise the kids, if there are any, and make them look good at office-functions, and the metamorphosis from butterfly to cocoon-wrapped caterpillar is complete, from spare button-down shirt in the office to the meaningless sugar on the side.

    Liberation looks a lot like a lonely captivity, as the women join the men in leading lives of quiet desperation, and everyone works so hard to convey the gladness they don’t really feel. Don Draper hasn’t gone away. He’s just changed his name to Donna.

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  3. Another article about the triumph of (women's) autonomy by Hanna Rosin. Except this one is not titled "The End of Men".

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  4. Rosin's world can only apply to the top 10% of women who actually *have* careers instead of jobs. But I don't think these other 90% exist for her.

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  5. "There is no retreating from the hookup culture to an earlier age"

    well she is right here, no one retreats on the slippery slope down to the slime.

    "Except this one is not titled "The End of Men"

    don't get why she shouldn't have termed it the End of Men and Women: The rise of the promiscuous androgynes

    We hold that the new status will prove to be the worst kind of communism. The relations between the sexes, so carefully guarded by religion and by parents, by law and by society, will become common and therefore corrupt. The family, the foundation of the State, will disappear. The mothers, sisters and daughters of our glorious past will exist no more and the female gender will vanish into epicene. Involved in one ruin from our present proud preeminence, we shall become a laughing-stock and a by-word to the nations of the world. We appeal to our women to be content that as mothers they control man in his early and impressible years,; and as wives they rule him not less surely in the riper hours, and share with him whatever of most worth life and the common lot bring.

    http://mypostingcareer.com/forums/topic/5236-women-against-female-suffrage/

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  6. Thinking like a woman doesnt get you a man, ladies.

    Nor does it get you the atttention or admiration you were looking for.

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  7. The only way to stop this crazy feminism that's taking over the West is to stop or seriously limit taxes and immigration...do that and it all goes away because feminism cannot exist in natural law.

    Your taxes fund the stupid positions that these feminist warriors hold, like, anti-discrimination officer, human rights advisor, etc., and immigration encourages the society to stop reproducing and replace itself with another culture.

    As a start, it's good to see the NSW govt. promise to cut 80,000 public jobs because you know that most of these will be unproductive, feminist-endorsed positions that were only created to encourage the destruction of traditional men, and thus, the family.



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  8. Good God!!! Have you SEEN hanna rosin??? I can't imagine she has an easy time giving it away, or even begging for it. This hanna rosin looks as vile as she writes.

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  9. "Young men and women have discovered a sexual freedom unbridled by the conventions of marriage, or any conventions."

    Except for those "overly" serious young men who are honest suitors with honorable intentions, who want to marry good women and have good children. They've "discovered" a wasteland, as far as people like Hanna Rosin can arrange it.

    In integrated pest management, this would be described as "breeding interference" - flooding the environment with sterile breeding partners, so that the fertile ones in the wild mate in vain or not at all, and the numbers of the vermin that one is trying to get rid of are reduced.

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  10. Like so much of our journalism, Rosin's article pretends to report on a social innovation when it is really advertises that movement. There may be a note of uncertainty towards the end, but elsewhere the article full of promises that a young woman will have fifteen years of money to spend entirely on herself, multiple intriguing erotic encounters, and a string of triumphs in the boardroom. It's a fantasy that plays to the narcissism of young women, beguiles them, and causes them to do as their masters wish. Reading Rosin is like looking at a WW I recruiting poster, knowing that the depicted fantasy of martial valor enticed young men to their deaths.

    I was interested by the melancholy line about all the photographs from a young girl's twenties ending up buried deep on a Facebook page where her husband cannot see them. We've all made mistakes, and few of us make a completely clean breast to our spouses, but can you imagine a marriage in which both man and wife pretend that an entire decade never happened?

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  11. Rosin wrote,

    " their hookup years are likely to end up as a series of photographs, buried somewhere on their Facebook page, that they do or don’t share with their husband"

    So you can "bury" racy photographs...on Facebook of all places? Wait, seriously? Has no one told this woman that Facebook is the Internet equivalent of your own personal billboard?

    Haha, maybe it's not such a bad parallel, though. Look, just as you cannot "bury" your past on the Internet, neither can you bury your past in real life. Better to live like the whole world's watching. These days, it pretty much is. And Hannah should know that.

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  12. Hanna Rosin is, to put it plainly, evil. One day she will answer to God for her deeds.

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  13. Elizabeth Smith said...

    Another article about the triumph of (women's) autonomy by Hanna Rosin. Except this one is not titled "The End of Men".


    oh. oh!

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  14. T.N. Toluene said: "Hanna Rosin is, to put it plainly, evil. One day she will answer to God for her deeds."

    I think this slightly oversimplifies the nature of the problem. Evil, yes, but it's clearly rooted in a tragic and pitiable psyche that seems bent on conjuring up any sort of twisted satisfaction for a scorned ego with bitter contempt for men. Rosin seems to be aware of the evil being promulgated, yet she blatantly boasts of it, because she thinks she's got something to prove. Devlin correctly identifies the problem as deep-seated penis envy. She will in fact settle for widespread misery as long as she gets to convince herself and others that the record now shows women can beat men at an imaginary contest. So perhaps we should just pretend she's made her point and we can then agree to return to some semblance of peaceful happiness. If only that would be enough...

    Damned pride.

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  15. Pace Anonymous, I think that Rosin has a fair way to go in the personal hideousness stakes before she matches such ueber-crones of old as Betty Friedan:

    http://graphics8.nytimes.com/images/2006/02/05/national/05friedan2_184.jpg

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  16. Hanna Rosin and Betty Friedan have a more important link than being plain.

    Hanna Rosin was born in Israel, where "unreconstructed" sex roles are encouraged, but she's pushing for what amounts to the preemptive destruction of families in English not Hebrew, in America not Israel.

    There is an important ethnic aspect to feminism and the other socially destructive movements. It's not the only aspect, and it shouldn't be used as an excuse not to take on the bad arguments by which harmful laws are pushed forward. But the tearing down of White Christian populations and cultures is being carried on to a disproportionate extent by people who have historic grievances against White Christian men.

    People who are highly ethnocentric are biased. Self-deception is part of bias. With that bias, it's easy to convince yourself that people you have grievances against anyway are morally obligated to do things that are likely to reduce their numbers, power and social cohesion. Those consequences won't bother you.

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  17. Daybreaker.
    My grandmother was a feminist and not Jewish.
    Most Feminist people i've met have been entirely non-jewish people.
    They want this.
    The jewish angle must be dropped otherwise the west is never going to have opposition to the groups attacking it. It is misdirection. Quite frankly insanity to blame the jews for everything when there are bigger fish out there that want to see the west extinguished.

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  18. I am not so sure about these "bigger fish," because Jews are disproportionately effective. The same bad ideas have a different effect, depending on whether they are held by people with a quiet culture and not much money or opportunity to be influential, or by people with high intelligence and very strong ethnic networks of influence.

    But, you're right. Many feminists are not Jewish.

    And ultimately the motives of those who push these bad ideas are not the biggest issue. The biggest issue is the consequences. Whether someone pushes a harmful idea because they have an ethnic bias, because of "sin" or "wickedness" or just because they are homely, as long as their influence is the same the consequences are the same. If a doctor takes the wrong, healthy kidney out, it doesn't matter for the patient's health prospects whether the doctor was biased against patients of that race, drunk or just having a bad day.

    In this case, if you program a lot of young women with ideas that make them less fertile and worse wives and mothers, the harm to them, to the good men who should have married them young and raised good and large families, to the children they should have had, and collectively to White nations is undiminished regardless of the motives of the cultural programmers.

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  19. "In this case, if you program a lot of young women with ideas that make them less fertile and worse wives and mothers, the harm to them, to the good men who should have married them young and raised good and large families, to the children they should have had, and collectively to White nations is undiminished regardless of the motives of the cultural programmers." (Daybreaker.)

    Precisely, Daybreaker. An obsession with motives, as opposed to (invariably pernicious) outcomes, is the stuff of cultural-Marxist fantasy. And if this obsession continues to be treated as morally valid, then only cultural-Marxists will benefit (since they always can, and do, maintain that their motives were pure).

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  20. It's wrong to say that Jews are alone responsible for the destruction of the West.

    It's ignorant and naive to say that they haven't happily pushed it along. It's just plain false to say that they've bemoaned it or tried to stop it. Notable exceptions aside, Jewish organizations are suspicious of whites acting as whites and hostile to Christianity. I could tell plenty of personal anecdotes from college and point to plenty of voting trends, and none of it would tell you anything you don't already know.

    I don't think Mr. Richardson permits discussion of this topic. If he thinks it right, I'm sure he'll remove this comment. The only reason I post it is to respond to some of the misleading, fearful and frankly craven comments posted above. Jews are people like anyone else. As such they're neither above rebuke nor below honor. We honor them for their accomplishments and contributions to the world. That is just. Neither should we fear to rebuke them when they do damage to it. That is also just.

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  21. Very interesting debate. Some women are waking up to the bullsjit of the feminists... and I've noticed a trend that western men are increasingly marrying Russian, Asian etc women who don't have an axe. to grind and have more honour than our brainwashed locals. A must see if you want a good looking woman debunking feminism is :

    Christyomisty channel on youtube .

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  22. It's hard to get less honorable than Hanna Rosin's young subjects, misled and self-trained as they are to think "an overly serious suitor fills the same role an accidental pregnancy did in the 19th century: a danger to be avoided at all costs, lest it get in the way of a promising future," and falsely reassured by Hanna Rosin and others that "the desire for a deeper human connection always wins out, for both men and women."

    No it doesn't, and that is the tragedy. Often the desire for the deepest human connection ends in bitter frustration, and it is just the sort of corruption that Hanna Rosin and her kind subtly promote that leads to that result, both for the corrupted woman who think that they can delay through all their sexual prime because love will always win out for them, and for the good men that got pushed aside in favor of bad boys and building a "sexual career".

    If he can find a Russian woman with morals, a backbone and the decisiveness to seek marriage and children at the proper age, a man would be mad to reject her in favor of the best-indoctrinated, morally corrupted products of the cultural elite that Hanna Rosin and Betty Friedan have been part of.

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  23. Another thing the piece validates is the power of elite institutions to socialize people contrary to the moral values they hold and that their parents hold. It's not a matter of rebelling against the unjust authority of tyrannical, repressive parents, which is what liberal mythology would suggest. It's about people conforming to the prevailing power, and losing their integrity.

    "The most revealing parts of the study emerge from the interviews with the less privileged women. They came to college mostly with boyfriends back home and the expectation of living a life similar to their parents’, piloting toward an early marriage. They were still fairly conservative and found the hookup culture initially alienating (“Those rich bitches are way slutty” is how Armstrong summarizes their attitude)."

    "Most of the women considered success stories by their dormmates had a revelation and revised their plan, setting themselves on what was universally considered the path to success."

    This is a very intimate form of class warfare, with the upper class socializing the best of the lower class out of the values that help lower class people to prevail against power.

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  24. Set this story beside the ideal of universities as character-forming institutions.

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  25. The issue of how Jews contributed to things has been raised so I'll briefly respond.

    It's certainly possible that a disproportionate number of feminists have been Jews.

    This could have been from bad faith (hostility to a surrounding culture) or from a misguided good faith (a high proportion of Jews being intellectuals and susceptible to ideological causes).

    At the same time, it's also clearly the case that the average university educated, middle-class woman of whatever background is likely to have some sort of feminist mentality.

    So we're dealing with something that exists at the larger cultural level - something that's taken on a life of its own.

    It's a part of the culture wars - and one that has to be fought at the larger cultural level.

    In general, we're still losing, in the sense that policy is still being framed in terms of feminism. But there are undercurrents of thought that are moving away from feminist orthodoxy.

    Our task is to contribute positively to those undercurrents and to try to guide them in the right direction.

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  26. Nothing against Russian women, but there's an easier strategy for Anglo men here in Melbourne which is to get out of the inner suburbs.

    There are some very pretty girls from good families who are marrying quite young (early 20s).

    I made a mistake when I was in my mid-20s. I stubbornly stayed amongst the Hanna Rosin types, telling myself that I only needed to meet one woman who was more serious about family formation.

    That's correct as a matter of logic, but it's not a good strategy. What a man needs to do is to find the right kind of milieu - one in which there are numbers of women who could potentially make a good wife.

    If I was going to marry younger I should have shifted out of the trendy inner city area, made friends with some sociable men, and become a part of their wider social circle.

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  27. The countries in the vanguard of applied feminism, such as Sweden and New Zealand, do not have a particularly high percentage of Jews, so feminism is largely an offshoot of WASP culture.

    As to why young women are making more than men, that's largely due to technology and high male productivity.

    Advances in technology leads to an economic surplus which creates lots of non-essential jobs (such as public relations) which women tend to dominate.

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  28. Mark,

    I wrote the post above ("Loony left, loony right").

    I am from Scotland, by the way. I live less than an hour's drive from the place referred to in this post:

    http://ozconservative.blogspot.co.uk/2010/04/trawlermen.html

    Shulamith Firestone is of Jewish origin, obviously.

    It's funny how so many of the early far-left and Marxist thinkers were Jewish, yet today it seems to be more non-Jewish white people with a university education who do most of this kind of thinking nowadays.

    Aside from that, you state that the West is trying to do much the same thing as what she suggests. I suppose all "progressive politics" is a bit like that - instead of having a sudden revolution, things have to be changed slowly but surely, piece by piece, in order to fit a more left-wing agenda in a way that will not be too much for the people to take.

    I have read about the attempts to "abolish gender" in Sweden. Now here in Scotland no one really suggests that we do that, but there are a few loony leftists out there like Mhairi McAlpine who is a lesbian radical feminist Marxist anti-racist or something like that.

    Overall, the Glasgow area has the strongest left-wing "scene" in Scotland. And I don't live there anyway, nor even near there.

    When I was a teenager and maybe up until the age of about 21 I was broadly supportive of some left-wing ideas until I realised what it was all about.

    Mass immigration and a multi-cultural society is not good for white heterosexual men. A key reason for this is because of non-white men taking white women. Multiracialism, especially when coupled with feminism, is not good for the genetic, racial, reproductive and sexual needs of white heterosexual males.

    A leftist wrote to me "most [white heterosexual males] have no reason to perpetuate the social dominance of [their kind]". Is this really true? I don't think it is.

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