Friday, February 1, 2013

False Nostalgia

Roosh, like most of the New Misogynists, seems to believe that there was some golden era when men were "kings" and women accepted their subservient roles.  This is pure "false nostalgia" -- that is, a nostalgia for a time and place that never really was.  Let's take one of their premises: that ordinary men used to have a greater selection of beautiful, submissive potential wives (before fat, grumpy feminists came along and ruined it for the average joes).

In fact, U.S. history demonstrates that a competitive marriage market has always existed, especially in the West.  The lonely, eccentric Norwegian bachelor is not a myth.  Furthermore, the idea that a wife should be "beautiful" (that is, sexually desirable to other men) is a relatively modern concept.  Throughout our history, men and women have tended to value more practical qualities in mates, i.e., the capacity and willingness to work hard, shared religious values, property or the potential to acquire property.  Marriage was too important a commitment to be based primarily on sexual attraction, and literature abounded with stories about the perils of letting romantic or erotic love take sway over pragmatic considerations.

Let's face it:  George Washington, the most admired American man of his day, did not marry Martha Custis because she was centerfold-worthy!

My own grandfather, as surviving photographs attest, was an exceptionally handsome young man.  My grandmother, on the other hand, was quite plain.  He married her because she was clever with her hands, extremely industrious, both frugal and enterprising, and had skills (including carpentry) that were useful.

So when Roosh and others hearken back to a time when an array of chaste, lovely girls were available for any man's taking, like the houris of an Islamic paradise, they betray their ignorance of the realities of American social history.  Roosh blames coveted status symbols such as I-phones for rendering women "incapable of love," yet his own values have been equally "corrupted" by consumerism and popular media.  

In fact, all of us are to some extent similarly corrupted, awash in advertisements and commercials (some 3000 per day!) that teach us that we not only deserve whatever the sponsors are selling, but will be miserable failures without it.  And this has nothing to do with feminism.

1 comment:

  1. You've made a golden distinction, Cinzia: the corruption of our values (or our memories, more likely) has nothing to do with feminism. It's the expected fallout from the acquisitive lifestyle. That some people want to blame, say Gloria Steinem, and not Coca-Cola baffles me to no end. But blame doesn't have to be accurate, I suppose, since it's merely a strategy for going along with the program. Like this Roosh fellow: he wants to bitch about stuck-up beauties but he won't stop worshiping a kind of beauty that is made to reject someone like him—a foreigner with a strange name and a despised religion. I understand why he's angry; I don't understand why he's so weak.


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