Cartoon from the New Yorker Magazine - if you can't read the caption, it says, "The subject of tonight's discussion is: Why are there no women on this panel?
Carol Diehl of Art Vent has some astute comments on the status of women after watching two 60's films, "Contempt" and "Viva Las Vegas." I remember all too well the causal sexism of the period but what shocks me and continues to shock me is how many younger women reject "feminism." Somewhere along the way these young women got the (incorrect) message that feminism is a bad thing, something they don't want to be associated with. Why did this happen? I find it very frustrating.
I fell like telling them that it "it ain't over yet." When I worked in a huge medical center in California, I was shocked at how ruthless and vicious women were to each other - esp. younger (pretty) women on their way up the corporate ladder. The men didn't have to worry about keeping us "old bags" in our place. They had women to do that for them. A lot of women "got it" when they turned 30 and were now deemed too old but they sure did a lot of damage on their way up. I was talking to a gallery owner in SF the other day who firmly believes that women artists now have as much opportunity as male artists. A cursory look at who is who and who makes what in the art would should dispel that illusion but somehow it keeps on ticking. Sexism - the gift that keeps on giving.
How do you counter such lethal ignorance except by continually keeping the dialogue open. Younger women who think that feminism is dead and that they are "above" such things are in for a horrible surprise - every tiny gain from jobs, housing, child care and health insurance (!) is under attack.