Tuesday, July 24, 2007

on hillary

Harpy, Hero, Heretic: Hillary

this was actually a really good piece. it takes a look at the different archetypes we've forced hillary clinton to inhabit in our cultural imaginations (and then taken her to task for them) and the article is a good, old-fashioned piece of textual analysis i haven't seen since grad school.

take a gander; it made me rethink my own discomfort with hillary clinton.
imagine! i rethought something!


Pour of Tor said...

This was a fascinating article, and I have to say that feminist honesty has forced me to think long and hard about whether my dislike of Sen. Clinton as a presidential candidate has its roots in any deeply repressed residue of misogyny.

But in the end, I have to say that I think having a candidate that has a genuine commitment to progressive policies (including but not limited to women's rights issues) is more important than having a female president. In other words, I agree that the treatment Sen. Clinton has received in the public sphere has been shot through with misogyny and coercive stereotyping, but that does not somehow exempt her from scrutiny of her tepid policy stances (I guess I am what the article describes as someone who sees the "Dianne Feinstein Hillary"). I look forward with great impatience to the day when we will have a truly progressive female candidate.

On another note, I was surprised by the part of the story which referenced Elizabeth Edwards's (whom I greatly admire) comments about H. Clinton making "different choices" which made her "less joyful," particularly since they have had remarkably similar professional careers. After a little research I found that E. Edwards had objected strenuously that she was misquoted, and that her reported remark was a combination of two uncontextualized comments. All in all, the incident seemed to be a rather contrived attempt to foment bad blood between two rather similarly strong, political women. But that is largely speculation on my part. :)

ding said...

PoT: you've articulately expressed my own misgivings about Hillary Clinton. but because i'm also human i have to admit to being pretty petty, too, in my dislike of her. for some reason, i'll slam her in my mind for being the symbol of the 'status quo' but i will cut old bill a huge mile of slack, even though he's not exactly a portrait of flaming radicalism. is her success like a red flag to me? is it envy? jealousy?

it's hard to say what my lizard brain will dredge up when it comes to hillary.