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Ceasefire : Why Women and Men Must Join Forces to Achieve True Equality

Young, Cathy

14 ratings by Goodreads
ISBN 10: 0684834421 / ISBN 13: 9780684834429
Published by Free Press, New York, 1999
Condition: Near Fine Hardcover
From JB Books (Garrison, ND, U.S.A.)

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About this Item

FIRST PRINTING of the First Edition. A frank survey of the disastrous consequences of the gender wars - on personal relationships, marriage, family, confusions re social norms and personal goals, and so much more - the author calling for an end to fictions, myths, exaggerations, victimization obsessions, and for men and women to work together towards a more genuine social equality based on reality. Hardcover with dust jacket, notes, indexed, 360pp. Remainders mark to underside. Rare. Size: 8vo - over 7¾" - 9¾" tall. Bookseller Inventory # 00015765

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Bibliographic Details

Title: Ceasefire : Why Women and Men Must Join ...

Publisher: Free Press, New York

Publication Date: 1999

Binding: Hard Cover

Book Condition:Near Fine

Dust Jacket Condition: Near Fine

Edition: First Edition.

About this title

Synopsis:

Are men and women really from different planets? In Ceasefire!, journalist and cultural critic Cathy Young argues that our current obsession with personal problems between the sexes has had disastrous consequences for women's progress -- and for men's as well. Young believes "the myth of gender difference" has allowed feminists to continue to see women as victims, at the same time buttressing conservatives' claim that the weakening of traditional roles has wreaked havoc on our society. It's time to re-examine our allegiances in the gender wars.

Young insists that we must abandon the premise -- rooted in women's historical second-class status -- that anything that benefits and empowers women furthers justice and equality. This belief leads to the unspoken assumption that women's interests are more legitimate than men's and that their problems are more deserving of concern. Young argues that, whereas feminism once focused on inequities in laws and social norms, it has become preoccupied with men's personal mistreatment of women. As a result, bad acts by men are magnified into a "war against women," while women's bad acts are denied. A new emphasis on special protections for women rather than equal rights has dangerously eroded the rights of men accused of rape, domestic violence, or sexual harassment in ways that can backfire on women too. Meanwhile, conservatives have developed their own mythology of women's victimization -- by divorce, by sexual liberation, by pressure to work outside the home.

Drawing on scholarly research, media reports, and real-life cases, Ceasefire! demolishes both feminist and antifeminist fictions. Young challenges men and women to transcend old and new myths, to look beyond the polarities of either denying or exaggerating sex differences, and to value individual uniqueness and flexibility. To achieve true equality, she says, we must pay attention to sexism against men as well as against women (without turning men into a new victim class) and ask women as well as men to rethink their stereotypical views of the other gender. Sure to cause controversy across the political spectrum, Ceasefire! surveys a wide range of issues -- from career/family conflicts to female violence, from sexual dynamics on the job to the problems of divorced fathers -- to offer a surprising vision of true social equality.

Review:

In this stirring rebuke to the doomsday writings of feminist authors such as Susan Faludi (Backlash), Cathy Young provides a commonsense approach to resolving the political and personal war between the sexes. There is no "war against women," proclaims Young, who smartly rebuts the phony scholarship of advocacy groups on a series of controversial issues, from the incidence of domestic violence (not as frequent as you might think) to the wage gap (much smaller than you've been told). Young's intelligent handling of this data--the strongest aspect of the book--allows her to advance dozens of contrarian ideas. Although many of her targets are on the political left, she certainly is no right-winger. In fact, Young embraces many aspects of the sexual revolution, and devotes an entire chapter to attacking conservative authors such as George Gilder and F. Carolyn Graglia for their views on gender. In the final chapter of Ceasefire, Young offers a series of proposals for de-escalating the gender wars: don't assume sexism is the root cause of all women's problems, rewrite sexual harassment law, demand that husbands and wives serve as equal parents, and so on. Many readers will haggle with Young over several of her interpretations, but by book's end she probably will have them on her side. A well-argued and carefully reasoned polemic. --John J. Miller

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