Thursday, March 02, 2006

Enjoy the Silence

Within the past year, too many strong women have died, the media allowing their memories to go gentle into that good night. How can we let women like Betty Friedan, Octavia Butler, and Andrea Dworkin pass without honouring sufficiently who they were and what they did?

Of the three, Dworkin, who died last April, seemed to generate the most posthumous headlines. Indeed, I heard about her passing the first day it was publicized. Maybe this had something to do with how polarizing she was?

But Friedan? And Butler? Next to nothing. Octavia Butler died February 24. I read about the reclusive Butler's death only half an hour ago. Why is that?

Is the media lax in their coverage? Or do they have a blind spot when it comes to women of genuine achievement (the Britneys and Madonnas of the world need not apply)? I certainly hope that this is no implicit value-judgment of Friedan's and Butler's work! Do women have to be as divisive as Andrea Dworkin in order to be considered noteworthy?

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