Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Another Take on the Femivore

Following the NY Op-ed piece on "femivores" I blogged about earlier, there's another woman's take on her status as a "femivore" over at Jezebel. She highlights how despite her feminist beliefs, education and commitment to egalitarian living within the context of the modern homesteading movement, she acknowledging that: real manual labor is hard and that perhaps her husband is better suited for it. She's noticed that the Do-it-Yourself-er's are all very male-dominated, in both their approach and conversations. She has found herself falling into work that was traditionally designated by gender--and yeah, she's doin' the chick stuff.

The whole piece is worth a read, check it out here, but her are a few choice quotes:

Modern homesteading is a self-sustaining, self-sufficient, anti-consumerist lifestyle that lends itself closely to the core tenets of feminism.

The irony is that while there's no question I'm more resourceful and frugal and self-sufficient in my new life, I actually felt like less of a feminist than ever.

Which leads me to another point. For all of my newfound self-sufficiency, there's a lot of brute, physical strength involved in living closer to the land, and I've realized after trial and error that I don't have much of that. I actually kind of suck at performing most outdoor chores. I'm still pretty much clueless when it comes to trying to navigate the back of my husband's truck onto a trailer hitch, which I know annoys him, though he tries to be patient. Horses scare the crap out of me to the point of tears. I can barely lift a bag of chicken feed from the trunk of my car. I'm expected to haul 25 pound buckets of water down to the chickens every morning, stack firewood, light fires, wield nail guns, operate Bobcat bulldozers, dig ditches and wage daily battles with an aggressive rooster who I swear is out to kill me.

I sometimes find myself wanting to hole up in the house and assuage my guilt for not helping him dig a trench to China by baking him cookies, or making him a nice casserole, or some such. Suddenly, dusting the end tables doesn't seem so bad. Betty Friedan would probably roll in her grave.

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