What women (don’t) want

// 24 May 2007

kate smurthwaiteImagine taking the very worst of those magazine’s supposedly aimed at women and distilling it in a big vat of misogynist nonsense and then unloading it onto the web. Welcome to Jezebel, the new “women’s” blog from Gawker.

I think the view Gawker has of women is very neatly summed up when they mention “Nebraska” and feel the need to add “(a state)”… I wish I was making this up.

So what is it that us women are interested in then? Mainly relationships – other peoples it seems, a good two-thirds of stories are about celebrity relationships. Personally I am interested in celebrity relationships – I’m interested in how they’re portrayed in the media and how they highlight gender issues that “ordinary” people may be experiencing.

For instance Anne Heche’s divorce – we’re told she’s a poor cook while he looks up internet porn while he’s meant to be looking after their child. Those are some really interesting issues. As a woman – what do you do if you discover your partner uses large amounts of pornography? How does it affect your relationship, how does it make you feel and how do you react if there’s a risk of children finding it? And these days a lot of women and even more men have very limited kitchen skills. The wide availability of pre-prepared food may appear to be making life easier but if it generates a generation who are effectively unable to prepare fresh food from fresh ingredients, then that has serious implications for our health and wellbeing.

Sadly that’s not the Jezebel response. They’ve gone with “Sounds like a normal marriage to us!” Never mind that more men than women admit to poor culinary skills. And remember ladies – all men look at porn, just get used to it.

As for the rest of it, try these extracts for size…

“Does this mean we can stop coloring our hair?”

When were we supposed to start? Did I miss a meeting?

“Guess those fake breasts paid off!”

Since when was cosmetic surgery a business plan?

“You can never be subtle enough when it comes to reminding a guy where his vagina is coming from”

Any sentence with the words ‘his vagina’ needs a re-think doesn’t it?

“Conventional wisdom holds that women’s magazines aren’t as good as men’s magazines.”

At what? And who writes half the crap in so-called women’s magazines? Men! I don’t think the author of this piece has subscribed to BUST yet…

“Males of the species: Now, sadly, even more irrelevant.”

Speak for yourselves, the men in my life are very relevant thanks. Of course the article is about fertility treatment. Because remember ladies – life is about baby-making!

“We thought feminism was supposed to be straightforward.”

Who told you that? It’s as diverse as, erm, the women who definitely WON’T be reading your stupid website!

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