Symbols of Suffrage: The Feminized Nation

Once the Unlovable Feminist's message gets out, and we've left our children in care of our Marytered Man-Wives, we reach the challenge of getting our silly clothing through the door of the voting booth. Once that challenge has been met, prepare for Woman's Rule in The Feminized Nation.

The Rooster, another Marytered Man Wife, is bewildered by being turned into a "Sissy", the preferred nomenclature of the time. But what is life like in a country under a feminine touch? It is a paradox; woman are both distracted and obsessed by petty and pretty things while ruling with an iron fist.

Poor Man-Wife is still woefully domesticated, even losing the last symbol of his manhood- The Pants.

The Modern Feminized Nation

Our modern maryter, Dumb Dad, lives in the Feminized Nation, a world where women's insignificant wants and needs take top priority. The Unlovable Feminist matures into The Nag, Dumb Dad's enlessly demanding partner in life. See what happens when women get the vote? Chicks; give 'em an inch, they take your balls, huh fellas?

The propaganda, both vintage and modern day, is effective in it's dangerous message; feminism equals women in control. This idea has strong roots today and many people still perceive this to be the point of feminism. Please remember that true feminism is about equality. The questioning of gender roles gives way to a new outlook on society and how it could function in a beneficial way for all people, not just women.


Symbols of Suffrage: The Martyred Man-Wife

Watch out fellas, those damned Unlovable Feminists are on the move! Worst of all, your wives have started to hear word of this new "women's movement" and they've gotten quite interested! Some of them are even ... reading! 

Can we imagine a world were women participate in politics? Don't hurt your brain, it's too horrifying! Before you know it, they'll be leaving you with the *gasp*...children... just because they want to have silly representation in their government system!

So where does that leave you, sir? In the household! Poor men, having to sacrifice their precious time and energy doing for one day what women do all the time! The Martyred Man-Wife, a.k.a. Suffragette Madonna, is a pathetic creature, at the whim of his woman. He fusses with the children, unexperienced in tenderness. He tries and fails to clean the abode, never trained in lowly housework.

Even when your wife gets home from voting, the pain never ends. Now that women have tasted power, they've gone mad...MAD I SAY! They point, they accuse, they blame the poor man-wife for his incompetence!

Still, if you can manage to keep your spouse off the streets and away from the voting booth, who knows? The Feminist Movement might have already gotten to her- she might be spending time at home in activities that don't involve making you dinner!

Today's Martyred Man-Wife: Dumb Dad

Modern advertisements played up the incompetence of the Man-Wife and turned him into the Dumb Dad, a clueless father figure who still can't figure out the intricacies of Mom's role in the household. Indeed, it may be actually true, as even today's full time working woman is responsible for a majority of the housework. If only the vision of the Martyred Man-Wife turned out to be somewhat true, perhaps the gap wouldn't be so wide! Indeed, as women have progressed and expanded their roles in society, their traditional roles have not been appropriately modified; partners have not necessarily compromised.

Really, Dad's incompetence is a shallow attempt to make women think there's something magical about being able to clean counters and fry an egg, a deliberate message that men can not perform these same tasks, so don't expect them to. Continue to work as hard as ever. Men seem comfortable with this stereotype; perhaps anything is worth getting off dish duty? Women seem comfortable with this stereotype; perhaps anything to have some sense of capability? When the media gives us this sense over domestic areas, the expectation is that we will not wander into the men's arena of control.

Your Typical Family

Here's some findings from my local community pharmacy and gift store. They are car sticker people, because nothing says I Love You like driving around with crudely drawn depictions of your family plastered to your window. Beware: 51% of sticker marriages end in sticker divorce.

As they get older, your car sticker kids are going to start wanting sticker toys and games and things. Let's see what they get:

Sticker Billy (you know he's a boy because he's wearing blue!) is getting some sports accessories! Football, Baseball, Basketball... Sticker Billy is quite the well rounded athlete. Every sticker Father's dream come true!

Sticker Betty (you know she's a girl because she's wearing pink...but what are those things on her legs? PANTS? Pants are for men, sticker Betty! Get with the times!) is getting everything a girl needs ... shopping bags, a cell phone, even the uber practical every day necesities, a princess crown and wand!

Go ahead, say it: What's the big deal you crazy feminazi? You're reading into cutesy sticker families? YES, Damn You! This subtle silly sexism normalizes the gender roles that are so hard to break out of. They start young, bombarding us in advertisements, media and asinine car sticker collections, and before we know it we think science and sports are for boys and magic and shopping are for girls.

For more on Gender Specific displays in stores, check out Happy Gender Specific Birthday, inspired by my local Walmart.


Symbols of Suffrage: The Unlovable Feminist

Equality? Voting Rights? Government Representation? You wouldn't be hurting your pretty little girl head with politics if spent your energy doing what women are supposed to; making a man happy and staying in the kitchen.

I bring you back to a time before women were pandered to politically, when the "war on women" was waged about voting rights. Some of these images are from England, some from the United States of America.

This collection of images is broken down into archetypes which are described in four separate posts. Together they represent the story of the woman anti-suffrage propaganda wanted to tell; the unbearable political woman and her secret agenda to feminize the nation and make men house slaves. I also explore the modern versions of these archetypes as they live in today's media.

Meet The Unlovable Feminist.

Women are frequently infantilized in the media. Notice the disarray of the household and neglect of those in her care (the broken baby) in the background ... we're setting up for the Martyred Man Wife's habitat.

To be fair, Willie Jones is quite a catch.
Ladies, ladies, surely you have better things to do than involve yourself in men's business? (Obviously she needs to get laid! That would calm her down!)

The Feminist; typically too ugly for love! One kiss would cure her foolish passion for lady voting!
A man is tossed out of this "Home for Lost, Stolen or Strayed Suffragettes."
Suffragettes were typified as being violent and militant. Marching, waving umbrellas around (that's England for you, I guess!) and beating up men were just a few of their preferred activities. Right before a man's eyes, a wild pack of suffragettes could come around and rip his precious, politically uninterested and stereotypically feminine wife apart!

Oh, Unlovable Feminist, you've lost your umbrella and gotten a haircut, but your basic characteristics remain the same...

The Unlovable Feminist today is often cannon fodder for humor aimed mainly at men, but unfortunately, the stereotypes have stuck even if most of the depictions are supposed to be funny. The fact that most images of feminists in the media are comedic is a two pronged problem; it treats the Woman's Movement literally as a joke and disarms complaints against it's content. Feminists themselves are seen has having no sense of humor at all.

Generation after generation, the Unlovable Feminist rears it's ugly head- literally. A feminist will always be portrayed as ugly (ugly compared to the beauty standard, that is!) and in the least, our modern interpretation of "unfeminine"; makeupless, plain faces, wild and unmanageable hair (if it's not tied back in your camo bandana, or cut extremely short, or completely gone,) body unshaven (which many people will also tie to cleanliness or "daintiness"), usually dressed in men's clothing, to match her manish aura. The Unlovable Feminist's plight is that her ugliness has left her unable to attract a man, and that sexual frustration and anger that leads to feminism because, what with having no kitchen to clean, she has nothing better to do and is resentful towards all males. The cure for the Unlovable Feminist is obvious ... a man.

Glee's "Coach Beistie", the manish, tough football coach ... what was responsible for her rough demeanor? The fact that she had never been kissed. Thankfully a handsome guy was around to save the day!

All the feminists in PCU needed was a little booze from boys! "It's, like, if you're nice to them, they bring you things?" she says later in an epiphany.

The most harmful effect of the Unlovable Feminist archetype isn't the image, however, it's the generalizations associated with feminism, best summed up in the image where the suffragette holds a sign proclaiming "Down with the Men, Up with the Women." Many people, both men and women, grow up with the assumption that at the same time that feminism attempts to uplift women, it degrades men; that the only way for women to feel better about their place in society is to take over "men's roles" instead of living in equality.

The key issue in any civil movement is just that- equality- not a declaration of one group of people being better than another. Actual feminists are frequently dismissed as being "man-hating", "whiny", "militant" or "bitchy." Men are encouraged to stay out of feminist issues simply because they are not women, hardly realizing that on the flip side of every stereotype about women is a stereotype about men. For every wild radical feminist there is a scared victimized male, for every sex kitten bombshell there is a shallow, arrogant bachelor, for every nagging housewife there is a dimwitted husband.

And speaking of incompetent males, in our next post we will look in at the Martyred Man Wife and see how he's surviving in our feminist society.


Anti-Abortion Images from the Past

In the wake of the "War on Women" in America, some vintage Anti-Abortion propaganda to enjoy:

From always incredible Comics with Problems, a few pages from "Who Killed Junior?", an anti-abortion comic book from your friends at Right to Life, circa 1973.

Here's one from the Canadian Party of Labor, 1973.

Blue Wave says "The pamphlet does not argue strictly from a perspective of fetal personhood but it is assumed throughout. The main thrust of their argument is that abortion amounts to the genocide of blacks and the working class, and that 'under capitalism, free abortions are forced abortions.' Many of their arguments presented are the ones we bourgeois pro-lifers use today. Sometimes it’s a little painful to read, because their hearts were in the right place, but they genuinely believed that once socialism was in place, women won’t have to abort! They’ll have everything they need to raise children."

This next one is in Russian; thankfully Viz has a translation!

"I came across this Russian anti-abortion poster from 1925, and thought it was pretty striking.  The text translates to:  "Abortions performed by either trained or self-taught midwives not only maim the woman, they also often lead to death."  It shows a woman talking with a midwife, then a woman in a hospital, and then a coffin being lowered into a grave with mourners looking on.  What struck me about the image is that the argument is essentially that abortions are bad because they endanger the lives of the women who get them.  The pathetic appeal depends on the viewer's sense of identification with the woman."

Finally some more modern images from a seemingly surprising source, feministsforlife.org. These images are also identifying with the woman, asserting that they deserve better than abortion, that if they only had the resources available they would not choose it. Sounds a bit like that Labor Party ad, above. Also it frames the argument strangely from the beginning with phrases like "Abortion advocates pit women against our children." and "Gone for abortions, almost every one."


Scare Tactics

Don't be so fat, FATTIE!

Did you find that helpful? If so, maybe you can help me understand the new campaign advertisements from Strong4Life.com. In an attempt to get tough on childhood obesity, the messages do more harm than good.

Allow me, in the spirit of this blog, to pay particular attention to one the following image:

Good Ole Fashion Fat Shaming at it's finest- and at what cost? Girls, and then Teenaged Girls, and then Women, have learned to associate their appearance, particularly their weight, with their womanhood and ability to feel feminine. As this campaign picture enforces, fat girls can not feel girly. Weighty women are hardly women at all, with no inherent right to feel pretty. We're the ones that learn to be self deprecatingly funny and have "great personalities". (On that note.)

Hey, fat shaming is nothing new. What? Prove it through a few hand selected vintage advertisements? OK!

The biggest difference is that most weight related advertising is aimed to adult women to sell them a product or service, while the Strong4Life campaign is taking the guise of health and marketing to young girls and preteens, a ripe age for eating disorders to develop. The morale of the media is whether you are selling a product, a drug, or a "campaign against obesity", it's always fashionable to remind people that being fat is unacceptable- and remember, the younger this message is relayed, the better.