Sheila Kennedy, who happens to be my cousin, authors a very popular blog, which is followed by thousands of people. She has previously written ten books, and the current one was done with a co-author, Morton Marcus. This book is titled: From Property to Partner: Women’s Progress and Political Resistance, and it’s available as either an e-book ($6.50) or a paperback ($15.00). Both authors (myself included) think women are people, and equal rights are a good thing. Although marketing has not been their forte, given society’s current social and political divisions, there are cogent reasons that this book deserves a widespread readership! Having published this book on Amazon, they were able to keep the price reasonable in order to promote wide access.
According to the authors: The book considers the progress women have made over the last 100 or so years—from a status that essentially made females the “property” of their fathers or husbands, to today’s almost-equal legal parity with men. It outlines the bases upon which that progress rests, and the very real threat posed by the right wing culture warriors who see women’s progress as an existential threat to their continued patriarchal dominance. In order to look forward and to act with vigor, we need to understand the technologies and cultural changes that have empowered women over the past years. Now, women (and men of good will) must enlist the technological and cultural opportunities of our times to issue a call to arms. This effort, this manifesto if you will, is intended to assist in a marshaling of building blocks for the critically-necessary program to stem the tide of reaction, to regain what we have already lost, and to prevent the further erosion of women’s personal autonomy. It is the time for all of us to ask, “What else we are at risk of losing?”
ABOUT THE AUTHORS
Sheila Suess Kennedy is Emerita Professor of Law and Public Policy at the School of Public and Environmental Affairs at Indiana University Indianapolis, and a former Executive Director of Indiana’s ACLU. She blogs daily about policy, culture, and politics at www.sheilakennedy.net.
Morton J. Marcus is an economist and former director of the Indiana Business Research Center at the Kelley School of Business, Indiana University. He co-hosts a popular podcast, Who Gets What?, and writes a long-running newspaper column on economic issues concerning Indiana and the nation.
After having read this book, I can supply a few comments: Aptly named, this book traces the upward trajectory of women’s status in American society primarily over the past two centuries. It includes all measures of involvement that include social, economic, technological, and physical features.
Despite recent efforts by the MAGA Republicans abetted by groups largely representing “White male Christian privilege,” women are inexorably approaching equity, as manifested by their growing numbers in politics, science, medicine, industry, religion, and sports.
Political opposition to women’s advancement often manifests itself in various forms such as Gerrymandering, “religious rights” promoting efforts to deny contraception and abortion, and most recently, repeal of Roe vs.Wade by the Supreme Court.
But virtually all rational thinkers would agree that complete parity between the sexes, while far overdue, will be a great boon to all society that includes males as well as females. Such parity will free half of our population to engage widely in beneficial efforts that are analogous to the economic tenet that, by reducing the disparity between all strata of society, metaphorically speaking, “the resulting rising tide will elevate all boats.”
Although this book seemingly avoids direct physical and mental comparisons between the genders, one must acknowledge the large numbers of gifted, intelligent and articulate women addressing large physical gatherings or in the electronic (TV) media. Moreover, as of 2021, women made up 59.5 percent of all U.S. college students, and the U.S. Department of Education data further shows that 65 percent of women that attended U.S. four-year universities in 2012 had graduated by 2018, compared with 59 percent of their male counterparts. Also recent comprehensive global combined analysis examined male–female school performance revealed that girls have always outperformed boys in all levels of school, which includes graduating with highest honors.
Finally, we must consider a very important question raised by this book: Would increasing leadership by women—especially if applied worldwide—lead to a more and caring relationship among all societies and nations? Our worldwide history of pugnacious and warlike male dominance manifested by all human and animal species suggests that we could do no worse by handing more major leadership roles to our female counterparts. Evidence of a greater female non-violent proclivity is provided by the fact that in the U.S.A between the 1982 and 2023, males were identified as the perpetrators of mass killings in 136 instances as opposed to a mere 4 females!
As a rather dismayed representative of my male gender, I cannot recommend this book highly enough to everyone, including both females and males. We can all benefit!
1 thought on “ARE WOMEN OUR LAST GREAT HOPE TO SAVE DEMOCRACY?”
What a splendid article. As always, you offer us such riches of thoughts and reality that is so helpful.