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Friday, April 10th, 2009

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What was the Question Again, exactly?
Belriose seems to have a question about the eternal war between the sexes, but I cannot parse her (or his, or its -- on the web One Never Knows, Do One?) meaning. This is part of an ongoing discussion that began here.

Belriose says: "I already asked: I wonder why you seem to assume that everything that doesn't fulfill the traditional roles is necesarly bad and devoided of the virtues of the old conceptions about romance or family."

This is not a question, but a rhetorical statement. I made no comments about 'everything' nor did I say it was 'necessarily' bad. A thing can be bad contingently; or it can have good and bad elements, where the bad outweighs the good.

What I said was this. Here is the whole passage, so you can read it in context.

"I confess I am the mere opposite of a feminist. I think men and women are different, and viva la difference. One difference between men and women is that men seek mates by pursuing them, and women seek mates by alluring them. This means that, even if we were, or could be taught to be, the same, men and women should differentiate and exaggerate masculine and feminine characteristics, for purposes of cold Darwinian calculation, even if not for fun. (As a minor example, when women dress distinctively from men, the dress itself becomes a feminine symbol, a poetic symbol, whereas if both sexes dress uniformly, the only way to allure a mate is for a woman to show her cleavage, or some other crass way to emphasize the sexual difference. It seems a paradox, but by being less feminine, the women is placed in a false position of having to be more crudely sexual to work the same allure.) Another difference, which is as much psychological as physical, is that men are more violent and more prone to violence. A related difference is that men can rape women and women cannot rape men. This means women should be armed, and drilled in the use of arms."

Now, picking this apart, it consists of one statement of fact (men and women are different) one observation from experience (men seek mates by pursuit, women by allure) and one conclusion which contains a value judgment (this means that sexual differences should be exaggerated, if not for reasons of 'fun' then also for reasons of Darwinian calculation). Obviously this value judgment need not apply to monks, eunuchs, or unisexual feminists, nor any one else who, for whatever reason, eschews sex and romance, or does not enjoy it. It does not apply to Albrecht the Nibelung, for example.

Collapse )
Let us compare and contrast with the popular culture of the previous generation, shall we?


Honestly, for the comparison to be fair, I would have liked to find a song where a young lady was singing about how sexy, naughty, and bitchy she was written in the 1940's or 30's, but I could not bring one to mind. Perhaps "I feel pretty" from WESTSIDE STORY?</div>
On a Lighter Note
Here is a quote from John Nolte, the 'Dirty Harry' of conservative film: 

There are certain words that when spotted in a film title immediately earn my goodwill, one of them being piranha. Others include: death, aliens, snake, Navarone, vampire, women (when the context involves prison), guns, blood, gladiator, wizard, monkey, Tarzan, hot rod, zombie, and for some strange reason, frogmen.
Myself, I have a similar feeling about science fiction books. My certain words or phrases which instantly earn my goodwill include Null-A, Princess, Mars, Demon-Prince, Dying Earth, Autarch, Lensman, Skylark, Tom Swift ( as in "Tom Swift and His Technoatomic Whateveroscope"), Lucky Starr and (insert name of astronomical body here), Harry Potter and (as in "Harry Potter and the Lavender Warlock"), Pirate (or, better yet, "Space Pirate"), Ranger, Patrol (or, better yet, Galactic Patrol),  Women (when the context involved space-women) or better yet, Amazon, Foundation, and any adjective involving large magnitudes as Infinite, Infinity, Eternal, Eternity, Endless, Neverness.

Nearly anything can be made to sound way cool merely by putting "of Mars" after it (as in Princess of, Gods of, Warlord of, Master-Mind of, A Fighting Man of, of even Thuvia, Maid of). Likewise, nearly anything can be made to sound slightly perverted merely by putting "of Gor" after it (as in Love Slave of, Sex Slave of, Slave slave of, Sexy Love Slave of, Attractive Barbarian Girl in Skimpy Leopardskin Bikini of, Pouty Schoolgirl of, Lonley Lesbian NIght-Nurse of).

Likewise, anything with the name Fu Manchu in it, automatically sounds sinister. Try it yourself! Merely add "Fu Manchu" to your title, and see if the book does not throb with oriental meance. For example, a famous book by Ray Bradbury, Dandelion Wine, sounds much more creepy when titled, The Wine of Fu Manchu, or even The Dandelion of Fu Manchu.

Retitling my books, then: 
  • The Golden Age of Fu Manchu (not bad) 
  • The Phoenix of Mars (so-so) 
  • Harry Potter and the Golden Transcendence (I'd buy it)
  • Orphans of Mars (sounds good)
  • Fugitive Schoolgirls of Gor (hm. that might have been a better title at thato)
  • Titans of Chaos (well, this is already a nice sounding title)
  • Last Guardian of the Dying Earth
  • Lensmen of Everness
  • Null-A Continuum (already has one of the goodwill words in it)
  • Galactic Patrol of Fu Manchu versus Skylark DuQuesne and the Space Pirates of the Second Foundation. (forthcoming)

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